The Arts ‘Respond and Present Issues’: Local Talent Unites for Reflective Evening
By: Carla León Celaya
After Orlando: An International Theater Action is made up of 70 short plays that were written in response to the mass shooting at Pulse Nightclub in 2015. It has been performed in over 50 theaters and universities around the country. The uniqueness of each production is that every venue selects specific pieces from the set playwrights.
Here in the Valley, Phoenix Theater and Arizona State University are overseeing the flow of the event. The Associate Artistic Director for Phoenix Theater, Robert Harper, and Arizona State University’s Associate Professor of Voice and Acting, Micha Espinosa, selected between 12-14 pieces to be read by local talent.
“There are a variety of themes: gun violence, discrimination, grief, love, LGBTQ issues and lives, and the emotion and reaction to the Pulse tragedy from a micro and macro perspective,” says Micha Espinosa.
The event will host a space where everyone—artists and audience members—can get together, discuss the issues and stand in solidarity. It will also provide “networking opportunities” where people can get involved to make a difference.
“I’ve never seen an event where so many theaters come together,” says Espinosa. “Southwest Shakespeare Company is bringing some actors; Childsplay Theatre Company is bringing some actors and that for me is a big thing—we are all coming together.”
The event is completely free and open to all audiences.
“I think that what would make me very happy is if we ended up staying much later than what we were supposed to—talking about how we can make a difference in our community,” says Espinosa.
The event will take place on Sunday, January 29th
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