Orange Alert

SU, Le Moyne team up for arts lecture by director of Dallas Black Dance Theatre, March 18

Zenetta Drew to discuss public engagement in the arts

March 11, 2013, by Rob Enslin

Zenetta Drew
Zenetta Drew
The leader of one of the nation’s most successful modern dance companies is visiting Central New York. Zenetta Drew, executive director of the Dallas Black Dance Theatre (DBDT) in Texas, will discuss public engagement in the arts on Monday, March 18, at 7 p.m. at The Panasci Family Chapel at Le Moyne College (1419 Salt Springs Rd., Syracuse). The event, which includes a Q&A session, is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Christine Conroy at 315-443-0367 or

Drew’s lecture is a joint presentation of the Janklow Arts Leadership Program in Syracuse University’s College of Arts and Sciences and the Arts Administration Program at Le Moyne.

“We’re thrilled to partner with Le Moyne to present Zenetta Drew, an authority on contemporary modern dance,” says Mark Nerenhausen, professor of practice and founding director of the Janklow Program. “She will talk extensively about her own professional experiences and how her work at DBDT exemplifies the importance of culture, community, and commerce.”

As executive director, Drew works closely with DBDT’s artistic director and board of directors to implement the company’s mission and vision. Since joining DBDT in 1987, she has helped increase the number of annual performances from 30 to 300; the size of the annual audience from 20,000 to 150,000; and the amount of the operating budget from $175,000 to $2.3 million. She previously worked for the Atlantic Richfield Company (ARCO).

Drew serves on numerous boards and advisory panels, including those for Downtown Dallas, the Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts, and the College of Business and Entrepreneurship at Texas A&M University-Commerce. She also is treasurer of the Dallas Development Fund. At the national level, she has served on an advisory panel for the National Endowment for the Arts and the strategic planning committee for Americans for the Arts.   
Drew’s visit comes on the heels of the publication of “Arts and Economic Prosperity IV” (Americans for the Arts, 2012), a comprehensive study of the impact of the arts on the Greater Syracuse area. The study, which involved SU, Le Moyne, and dozens of other organizations, found that the arts generate $133.4 million in total economic activity.

“This study reinforces the fact that the arts are a significant industry in Syracuse,” says Nerenhausen, adding that arts spending supports more than 5,000 full-time jobs. “When we support the arts, we not only enhance our quality of life, but also invest in our economic well-being. We’ve seen this happen time and time again in Syracuse, Dallas, and dozens of other American cities.”  
Founded in 1976, DBDT is Dallas’ oldest continuously operating professional dance company. The ensemble consists of 12 professional full-time dancers who perform a mixed repertory of modern, jazz, ethnic, and spiritual works by nationally and internationally known choreographers. For more information, visit
The Janklow Program is a 15-month, 39-credit hour master’s program, designed to train leaders of non-profit and for-profit organizations in the creative and performing arts. 
Le Moyne’s Arts Administration Program is a 15-credit hour minor degree program that teaches students how to apply management principles to various art forms.

Media Contact

Rob Enslin