Miami New Drama Lights Up the Colony Theatre to Support Out of Work Artists and Technicians

Susan Askew
Susan Askew

Miami New Drama Lights Up the Colony Theatre to Support Out of Work Artists and Technicians:

Weekend light show every half hour this weekend

Miami New Drama in collaboration with five of its lighting designers and theater technicians will “light up the night” to raise awareness of the impact of COVID-19 on the entertainment industry. In a Facebook post announcing the outdoor light show at the Colony Theatre on Miami Beach’s Lincoln Road, Miami New Drama said the program will “send a signal that the arts are here to stay!”

Alejandro Pérez, Yamil Charif, José Antonio Bermúdez, Ernesto Pinto, and Santiago Sharry joined forces to bring awareness to the industry and the artists and technicians currently out of work due to the pandemic. The light show, set to the rhythms of the Nu Deco Ensemble, begins today and will take place every 30 minutes between 8:30 pm and 10 pm on the theater’s façade through Sunday.
After a successful trial run last weekend, this weekend’s show will feature more music. “This is an initiative from our technicians and designers,” said Michel Hausmann, Miami New Drama’s artistic director. “They are the ones who came up with the idea and found the very large rental donation for the equipment. Their idea is to bring awareness to the loss of jobs in the industry.”

The “rehearsal” last weekend “was gorgeous!” he told RE:MiamiBeach.

“The arts have an enormous economic impact on Miami Beach,” Hausmann said in an announcement of the event. “Few have been as impacted by the nearly seven-month shutdown as the independent designers and technicians who make the magic of theater possible. This project is important to us because it gives voice to the current plight of artists you rarely see or hear about. The ghost light may be on inside, but outside we are lighting up the night and sending a signal that we are here to stay.” 

“The essence of this project lies in the architecture, the architecture of a space that cannot survive without the public who give it life, or the people who work behind the scenes to make that possible,” noted Ernest Pinto, lighting designer and master electrician at Miami New Drama. “We built on that with an original lighting design, conceived especially for this event, and added interactive elements. We hope that the audience connects with the essence of the piece and the message we want to put forth.”

“Our industry was the first to come to a full stop, and it will be the last to return to normalcy. This industry’s workforce has suffered through unimaginable economic and emotional turmoil, and we just hope our contribution will shine a small light at the end of this tunnel,” added project organizer Alejandro Pérez. “Thanks to the support of Miami New Drama, we aim to communicate the serious repercussions of COVID-19 on the entertainment industry.”

What: Light the Arts, a light show on the Colony Theatre
When: Friday, October 9 - Sunday, October 11
Show Times: 8:30 p.m. – 10 p.m., light show every thirty minutes
Where: Colony Theatre, 1040 Lincoln Road, Miami Beach
Miami New Drama will bring theater back to Miami Beach this fall through an innovative production of seven short plays in vacant storefronts on Lincoln Road. The theater company and its plans for Seven Deadly Sins are getting national attention as the pandemic continues to force new ways of thinking about how we do things.

Hausmann said MND will “continue investigating ways we can activate culture on Miami Beach in a safe and appropriate manner.”

About Miami New Drama: Miami New Drama is a nonprofit professional theater company based in Miami Beach, Florida committed to artistic excellence and groundbreaking work, with a vision of theater as a powerful form of social engagement. In residence at the historic Colony Theatre on Miami Beach, the company focuses on the development of new plays and musicals in both English and Spanish, most notably the first ever multilingual adaptation of Thornton Wilder’s classic “Our Town,” “The Cubans” by Michael Leon, “Confessions of a Cocaine Cowboy” by Billy Corben & Aurin Squire, “Queen of Basel” by Hilary Bettis, “Viva La Parranda!” by Betsayda Machado and “La Parranda El Clavo” in collaboration with Juan Souki, Gente Ociosa by Karin Valecillos, and the world premiere development of the new Louis Armstrong musical “A Wonderful World.” Miami New Drama is the winner of two Knight Arts Challenge awards and a Knight New Works Miami award from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and was the 2018 Miami New Times Best Theater for Drama.

Photo of last weekend's trial run, courtesy Miami New Drama

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