ACTA visited the Mayfair district of East San Jose on March 19, 2017, working with our partner, The School of Arts & Culture, housed at the Mexican Heritage Plaza. The occasion was a year-long initiative known as Celebrate Mayfair, an effort by organizations and residents to create a new narrative for their under-resourced neighborhood. At the center of this effort is the central tenet that by connecting people to one another, changes towards better health, safety and urban blight can be addressed by the people who live there. It is also an important way to recognize the assets of a neighborhood instead of characterizing it only through real and perceived deficits. The School of Arts and Culture played a central role in this initiative, inviting residents through their shared local histories (where activist Cesar Chavez got his start), and their cultural expressions to engage in this effort and to enjoy their neighborhood.

Hear from some of the artists who participated in the Sounds of California recording sessions in Mayfair in this video:

Sounds of California: Mayfair Media Collection forthcoming

ACTA trained local residents to work as a community documentation team collecting stories and sounds in Boyle Heights and nearby neighborhoods. 
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The Sounds of California: Mayfair program was produced in partnership with The School of Arts & Culture, Radio Bilingüe, and the Smithsonian Center for Folklife & Cultural Heritage.

The Sounds of California: Mayfair program was made possible with support from the James Irvine Foundation and the California Arts Council.