Double Edge Theatre’s SPRINGFIELD SPECTACLE Comes to Forest Park for Free – BroadwayWorld.com by BWW News Desk,  Photo by Mark Saperstein

 

 

Spripostcard-frontngfield’s City Mosaic will present free performances of Double Edge Theatre’s Springfield Spectacle September 23 & 24 in Forest Park.

Based on Double Edge’s Once a Blue Moon – Cada Luna Azul, this large-scale outdoor performance features the Double Edge Ensemble and renowned Argentine guest musicians Manuel Uriona (Bersuit Vergarabat) and Micaela Farias Gomez (Santadiabla), and will showcase youth performers from Springfield Conservatory of the Arts Public School and students and teachers from Springfield’s Community Music School.

The story of the performance follows a traveler who returns to his hometown after many years. Memories of his past and stories about the town’s colorful inhabitants evoke reflections about an increasingly universal theme: how progress can displace people. Inspired by Alejandro Jodorowski and other Latin American writers & artists, the show is imbued with the excitement of a Latin American carnival, and draws upon memory, culture, and song.

This performance project is part of a multi-year initiative that Double Edge has created in collaboration with Springfield schools and organizations. In 2015, Double Edge offered free performances of The Grand Parade to 1,000 Springfield students accompanied with in an arts-driven classroom curriculum led by the ensemble. Partnering with the Springfield school district, this is an ambitious effort to to introduce the internationally renowned company to the Springfield community through its young people.

“We really saw this as an opportunity to get to know what is our closest urban community.,” says Matthew Glassman, DE Co-Artistic Director. “This is something we’ve been dreaming about for so long and finally are able to implement what is a multi-year, 3-part initiative. This Second Stage is the Spectacle which is a deeper collaboration and includes community artists and young people. So far, it’s been amazing, being able to bring urban youth population to our rural center, training, gardening, everything! After this, in the future, we hope to create something original with the community.”

Double Edge Theatre believes that when there is rich and multi-layered interaction between artists and the community in which they live and work, a culture becomes animated and galvanized at the local level. This process thrives when artists and non-artists alike find mutuality in a variety of contexts that stimulate collaboration–and its impact is far-reaching. Double Edge cultivates this with its rural community in Ashfield, MA, where the theatre has its home on a 105-acre former dairy farm for the past twenty-two years. Double Edge’s Farm Center has grown into an international center for performance, training, research, and cultural exchange rooted in the theatre’s relationship with its local community.

Located less than fifty miles from Double Edge, the urban center of Springfield is a logical choice for this collaborative initiative, and will allow Double Edge greater access to newer and more diverse patrons and participants, develop new artistic practices, and strengthen and expand the theatre’s engagement in Western Massachusetts. “The goal for this amazing initiative is to encourage a connection among the residents of the City of Springfield; as well as those in the surrounding communities, while exposing all generations to the visual arts and inspiring continued support of culture in the City,” shares Morgan Drewniany, City Mosaic board member and Director of the Springfield Cultural District.

Last May, Double Edge performed this site-specific Latin American Spectacle in Boston’s Jamaica Plain, working closely and performing with youth from Boston’s Hyde Square Task Force, an organization that works to empower youth through the arts. The Spectacle started in and around the former Blessed Sacrament Church, marched down Centre Street, and concluded in Mozart Park, and was attended by over 1000 people over two days. The Bay State Banner wrote: “The performance became a physical take-back of the neighborhood. Shopkeepers came out of empanada restaurants and cigar stores to watch the parade. By this point in the spectacle it was no longer performance, it was a community coming together to celebrate their heritage.”

IF YOU GO:

THE SPRINGFIELD SPECTACLE – Double Edge Theatre
September 23 & 24 at 7pm
Forest Park, Springfield, MA

Presented by City Mosaic
Directed by Stacy Klein
Created by the Double Edge Ensemble

Free and open to the public

Double Edge Theatre was founded by Stacy Klein in 1982 as an artist-owned ensemble theatre, in which each member would be responsible for the art making as well as the business and board leadership. In 1994 the ensemble moved from Boston to a 100-acre Farm in the Ashfield Massachusetts Hilltowns to further the sustainability of the theatre and its international artist collaborations.

Double Edge Theatre’s mission is to create a ‘living culture’ by developing the highest quality of original theatre performance, based on the long-term imaginative work of its ensemble of artists and their rich interaction with the communities in which the work takes place-and by cultivating a permanent center of performance, training, research, and cultural exchange at The Farm in Ashfield, Massachusetts.

City Mosaic is a 501(c)3 non profit organization. Our mission is to support, promote, and be an active member of the visual arts community in Springfield, Massachusetts, including, but not limited to, arranging exhibits, sponsoring programs, planning events, offering classes and lectures and collaborating with artists, galleries, educational institutions, museums and businesses, using arts to improve the City landscape, educate, entertain and enhance lives.