Central Florida Community Arts exists to serve and build community through the arts
Our Core Values
Central Florida Community Arts exists to serve and build community through the arts.
We conduct ourselves ethically, responsibly, and honestly, and commit to financial transparency.
We actively seek diversity in our programming, audiences, and members in order to reflect, serve, and authentically celebrate the rich social and cultural diversity of our community. We do not tolerate discrimination of any kind. Everyone who shares these values is welcome in our artistic family.
We celebrate new ideas, challenge our imaginations, are flexible in responding to the ever-changing landscape of our community, and take responsible risks to broaden our impact and test the limits of our artistic horizons.
Along with our community of members and patrons, we collaborate with artistic organizations and community partners who share our values to achieve common goals in connection, service, and volunteerism.
We set high standards for our work and strive for excellence without compromising our mission. We are driven by passion, generosity, and beauty, and we push ourselves to our artistic limits.
In September 2010, a group of friends gathered in a garage to hear an inspirational vision. Led by Founders Joshua Vickery and Jonathan Cole, that night, the group incorporated what would become Central Florida Community Arts. These friends, who shared a passion for music making and service to the community, envisioned an organization that celebrated the talents of all, putting the people at the center of the art.
After a successful kickoff in February 2011, CFCArts performed its inaugural concert to over 1,200 people in May of 2011, with a choir of over 130 singers and an orchestra of more than 35 players. Since then, the community choir has grown to more than 300 – the largest in the country, and the symphony orchestra has grown to more than 200 – also the largest in the country. They added programs for children and youth, theatrical experiences for adults in subsequent years, and a dance company in 2018. The School of Arts & Health was formed in 2018 to house programs that provide a continuum of arts experiences for all ages and abilities, furthering CFCArts’ mission of arts accessibility for all ages and developmental abilities. In addition to its multigenerational, multidisciplinary nature, CFCArts is unique because it does not require auditions to join any of its ensembles.
Our organization thrives in our many partnerships and collaborations that reach thousands of artists of all ages and abilities across our region. With the vision to allow everyone in Central Florida to connect, serve, and perform, we create a safe place where ALL artists are celebrated, the arts are affordable and accessible – and no one is left behind.
About Our Founders
Founder, Founding Director, Community Choir, & Founding Executive Director
Joshua grew up with a passion for music ministry and service and served on several large church teams as music and worship director, leading vocal praise teams, orchestras, youth choirs, drama, and pageants. He helped direct the Palm Beach Singing Christmas Trees, which was televised to thousands in South Florida, and founded and served as the Executive Producer of the Central Florida Christmas Celebration, in which he coached youth and adult vocal performers, developed shows and scripts and managed hundreds of volunteers.
This passion for music and service spurred the idea for the Central Florida Community Choir, the predecessor of Central Florida Community Arts. As its Founding Executive Director, Joshua led the organization through explosive growth, a multi-county expansion, the creation of major strategic partnerships, and the receipt of major grants from funders like the Collaborative Community Council at AdventHealth Foundation, Orlando Magic Youth Foundation, and Walt Disney World. During his 11 years as Executive Director, he gained prominence, receiving awards such as “40 Under 40,” “50 Most Powerful,” “Arts Education Professional of the Year,” and more.
Joshua now resides in Washington, D.C., and is the CEO of a national arts organization creating music and choral programs for older adults.
Founder, Children & Youth Arts Programs
One of the most beautiful and powerful parts of CFCArts is the “serve” portion of CONNECT, SERVE, PERFORM. Through our youth programs, Kat created a scholarship fund where we could offer full scholarships to children who were sent to us from local children’s organizations: the Children’s Home Society of Central Florida, the Boys and Girls Club, and other foster care and youth empowerment organizations. Through this scholarship fund, we’ve been able to support the members of our adult choir and orchestra, who also generously gave, and over the years, CFCArts was able to offer full scholarships to hundreds of young people who otherwise would not have been able to participate.
Once the programs were established, Kat was ready to move on to a career where she could work more closely with children individually. She relocated to Seattle, Washington, where she began a career as a private caretaker for children on the autism spectrum, and Kat is currently working to create opportunities for autistic children in the Washington, DC, area.
Kat is so proud of the work that CFCArts continues to do to provide the arts to young people and will cherish her memories of her time with the children and families of CFCArts.
Founder, Community Theatre
Donald was born and raised in Central Florida and, for seven years, was a high school theatre teacher at Gateway High School in Kissimmee while also serving on the part-time faculty at Valencia College. He was a beloved teacher (Teacher of the Year, Arts Teacher of the Year for the County, etc.), and many of his students are pursuing successful careers in the Arts, while many others enjoy a love for Theatre to this day. Donald received his degrees from Florida State University (BA) and New York University (MA).
While working at CFCArts, Donald discovered his passion for writing and producing new work and also his desire to change the way people do theatre and the way audiences view theatre. He left to create Renaissance Theatre Company (rentheatre.com) with his co-founder Chris Kampmeier. The new company focuses on building a new audience for Theatre by creating and producing new and engaging experiences. Donald and his team are passionate about paying artists a living wage, diversity and inclusion, and sustainability.
Founder, CFCArts Symphony Orchestra
After winning a job as the Chief Magic Official, a spokesperson for Disney Parks during “The Year of a Million Dreams,” he relocated to Central Florida to begin a 12-year adventure working for Walt Disney World. During his tenure, Justin was a Stage Manager for some of the most popular shows, was a part of christening two new cruise ships, was an Entertainment Proprietor during the opening of two new lands at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, led the entertainment teams for Epcot’s many festivals, developed tours and team building programs for Disney Institute, and helped relaunch live concerts and nightly fireworks during the past year.
He has been with CFCArts as a music director and conductor since the organization’s beginning, designing programming and conducting the 160-member Symphony Orchestra, leading the Big Band, and creating and supporting numerous smaller ensembles. Justin expands his current artistic role at CFCArts to lead the overall creative direction and production.