Gov. Bryant proclaimed 2014 as the "Year of the Creative Economy: Mississippi Homecoming" during a ceremony with renowned pianist Bruce Levingston, a Mississippi native.
The "Year of the Creative Economy" will feature both ongoing events and new activities throughout the year and will highlight the state's vast talent across the creative spectrum and the impact it has on the local economy.
"Our creative economy is one of the state's true economic drivers. We are the birthplace of blues, rock "n' roll and country music. But more than that, Mississippi's creative economy is a job producer. In fact, job growth in Mississippi's creative economy has outpaced national creative economy growth in recent years," Gov. Bryant said. "This 12-month celebration, known as "Year of the Creative Economy: Mississippi Homecoming,' provides an unmatched opportunity to showcase the people, communities and enterprises that are moving Mississippi's economy forward."
The celebration will also bring home many well-known artists, performers and others to join the festivities in their respective home communities and to showcase the talent and drive grown out of their Mississippi experience.
Malcolm White, Tourism director for the Mississippi Development Authority, noted the economic impact of the creative economy.
"Mississippi's creative economy is a direct source of economic growth and wealth, accounting for more than 60,000 jobs across the state. We look at museums right next to manufacturing plants, and creative enterprises next to industrial facilities. From print shops and music venues to art galleries, restaurants and other innovative businesses, the creative economy provides sustainable economic contributions to the state."
During the ceremony, Mr. Levingston, an acclaimed concert pianist and recording artist who regularly performs at Carnegie Hall and other major venues, performed for students and guests at Power Academic and Performing Arts Complex in Jackson.
"I am delighted and honored to be coming back to my beloved home state of Mississippi to support and promote the arts, education and creative economy," Mississippi Native and renowned pianist Bruce Levingston said. "Our state has an amazing history of producing artists, writers and performers and I am thrilled to be a part of this wonderful program to celebrate and help further develop this great natural resource of creativity."
Follow @MSCreativeEcon on Twitter for updates and tweet with the hashtag #YoCE, which will be active throughout the coming year. A full calendar of events and activities will be listed at http://mscreativeeconomy.com/.
For more information about the creative economy in Mississippi, contact Mary Margaret White, MDA Tourism's bureau manager for Creative Economy & Culture, at firstname.lastname@example.org or (601)359-5750, or Alan Henderson, Creative Economy program manager, at email@example.com or (601)359-3186.