January 21, 2017
Speaking Up—and Singing Out—for America
This is a theater blog not a political blog but even before reports surfaced about how the new administration might eliminate the National Endowment for the Arts (click here to read about that) the theater community was speaking out—and singing out—in support of the bedrock American values of democracy, fairness and inclusion. And so although I'll go back to talking about shows next week, I feel I must add my voice to that worthy chorus.
Thousands (me among them) turned out at theater locations across the country for Thursday night's Ghostlight Project demonstrations that I talked about in my last post. There were so many folks packed onto the Red Steps in Times Square that stars like Brian Stokes Mitchell didn't even get a turn at the mic.
Over 30 artists, including Jessie Mueller, Kelli O'Hara, Billy Porter, Chita Rivera and Ben Vereen performed in Friday night's Concert for America, which also celebrated diversity. Ticket sales from the event will support such like-minded organizations as the NAACP, Planned Parenthood, the Southern Poverty Law Center, the National Immigration Law Center and the Sierra Club (click here to read more about the event and how to stream a screening of it Sunday night).
And folks from the theater community are not only participating in today's Women's March in Washington but have created a fitting anthem for it, which seems a fitting way to end this week: