Frequently Asked Questions

What does the Arlington Cultural Affairs do?
Arlington Cultural Affairs, a division of the Arlington County Department of Parks, Recreation and Cultural Resources, uses the power of the arts to transform lives and build community, and provides programs and services to create an environment that encourages excellence in the Arlington arts community.  
It provides support to Arlington artists and arts organizations through a competitive grants process, administered by the Arlington Commission for the Arts, that allocates space, technical support and money.   Arlington Cultural Affairs also presents Planet Arlington events, the Rosslyn Jazz Festival, Arts al fresco summer concerts, the Slapsticon Early Film Festival, literary events, visual arts exhibitions,  open studios in pottery and printmaking, and more.

How can my theatre company become an Arlington supported group?
Participation in the arts incubator is achieved through the Arlington Commission for the Arts competitive grants process.  Check with our grants officer for more information.

How do I get a ticket for one of the shows on your calendar?
Each arts group handles its own box office. Check out their website for further details on ticket purchase. Websites are listed at on our arts organization page.

How can my theatre schedule space in Arlington theatres?
Theatre space in Arlington is scheduled through a competitive grants process administered by the Arlington Commission for the Arts. Individual artists and arts organizations can apply for space, services and money. Arts organizations that perform primarily in Arlington, and individual artists whose legal residence is Arlington are eligible to apply.  Occasionally, theatres are available for rent. See our rentals page for more information.

How can I arrange to use a rehearsal room in Arlington?
Rehearsal space is scheduled through the grants process, and eligible groups can use space free of charge. Sometimes space is available for rent. Contact CAD Facilities staff.

When will the Ellipse Arts Center reopen?
The Ellipse Arts Center, previously located in Ballston, will reopen at the new cultural center in Rosslyn in October, 2010.

Will performances be resumed at Lubber Run Amphitheatre this coming summer?
We don't know. The amphitheatre needs extensive renovation before it is safe to be used by both performers and audience. With the current severe budget constraints, we are not sure when the county will be able to afford these major renovations. 

I am a potter or printmaker, are there facilities in Arlington that I can use?
The Lee Arts Center has open studios for potters and printmakers working at an advanced level. For those selected for the open studio, there is a very reasonable monthly fee. 

I want to take a beginner's class in drawing/painting/pottery.
Arlington Cultural Affairs does not offer beginner's visual arts classes -- the Lee Arts Center offers master classes and workshops to artists working at an advanced level. The Arlington County Recreation Division offers a wide range of art classes for beginners of all ages, as does the Arlington Arts Center.

How can I get involved in the arts in Arlington?
All arts groups use volunteers to support their art: for administration, ushering, technical assistance, boards of directors, as actors and directors, marketing and more. Our community theatres are completely volunteer organizations. Get in touch with them directly to inquire about being a volunteer. The Arlington Commission for the Arts is also made up of Arlington citizens interested in advocacy for the arts.

Can I rent a costume for Halloween?
No. The Arlington Cultural Affairs costume shop rents only to arts organizations.

Can my band play in the outdoor concerts of Arts al fresco?
Send a CD or tape to the Arlington Cultural Affairs Program Director for consideration. Send it by January/February when the summer concerts are scheduled. The address is Program Director, Arlington Cultural Affairs, 3700 S. Four Mile Run Drive, Arlington, VA. 22206.

Is the Arlington Arts Center an Arlington County facility?
No.  Arlington Arts Center, located at 3550 Wilson Boulevard, is a non-profit Arlington visual arts organization that is supported by, but not run by Arlington County.  Contact them.

I want to act. How do I find out who is having auditions for what shows?
Get in touch with the theatres listed on the arts organizations page. Each arts group handles its own auditions and productions,  with websites and mailing lists.

How can I get a speaker on the arts in Arlington for my group?
The Arlington Commission for the Arts can accommodate you. Contact them.