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NHCC selling out plenty of theater, music performances

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — The National Hispanic Cultural Center continues to hit new milestones.

The center, which is celebrating its 15th anniversary, has increased its events at the center from 200 to 700 in recent years.

With the rise in the number of events, the number of visitors has increased as well. The NHCC boasts a 42.5 percent increase in attendance in fiscal year 2014 to an expected 267,000 in the current fiscal year.

One of the points of growth is in the performing arts as the center recently reached its 15th sell out for the fiscal year.

Rebecca Avitia, executive director, said in a recent NHCC Board of Directors meeting that the center was close to having 15 sell outs last fiscal year, but was one shy.

In fact, in Sept. 2014, the NHCC Board of Directors implemented a strategic plan asking the NHCC to push to reach the goal.

“Last fiscal year, we got close with 14,” she says. “But we have 15 and the fiscal year just started in July.”

In five months, the NHCC reached the goal.

This is part to four elements.

There were 13 sold-out shows for the “Aye, No!” and “Estoy en el Rincon” — both which are part of the Siembra: Latino Theatre season.

The other two shows were part of the Chispa: Latino Music season. The first was the Aug. 19 show of Cuba’s Los Van Van and last week’s show of guitarist Edgar Cruz.

“This is more than a win for the Center; it’s a win for the amazing community of artists we work with — and it’s all thanks to the support of our audiences,” Avitia says.

And members of the NHCC Board of Directors are also thrilled with reaching the goal.

“In 2007, the center was found to be ‘the second most central institution’ to the arts and cultural industry in Bernalillo County by the Bureau of Economic Business Research at UNM, and this string of sell-outs demonstrates the center’s continued relevance and importance,” says Christopher Saucedo, NHCC Board of Directors president.