On the eve of the Presidential Inauguration, theaters across America joined to create “light” for challenging times ahead.
Members of the theater community – from Broadway to regional theaters to high schools and colleges and community theaters – came together to launch The Ghostlight Project. On Thursday, January 19, 2017 at 5:30pm, members of the Ithaca theater community, along with theatre communities across America, participated in the Ghostlight Project.
Inspired by the tradition of leaving a “ghost light” on in a darkened theater, artists and communities made a pledge to stand for and protect the values of inclusion, participation, and compassion for everyone-regardless of race, class, religion, country of origin, immigration status, (dis)ability, gender identity, or sexual orientation.
In Ithaca, participants gathered outside Kitchen Theatre Company at 417 West MLK/State Street at 5:15pm. There will be a short presentation. At 5:30pm the “light” was illuminated. Participants walked to the Commons spreading the light across Ithaca and a final statement was delivered there, followed by a discussion at Circus Culture.
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Kitchen Theatre Company, Hangar Theatre, Civic Ensemble, The Cherry Arts, Ithaca Shakespeare Company, Homecoming Players, Theatre Incognita, Opera Ithaca, Actor’s Workshop of Ithaca, Ithaca Fringe Festival, and Circus Culture participated in addition to many individual playwrights, actors, directors, writers, designer and technicians.
The mission of The Ghostlight Project is to begin a shared resistance to intolerance at all levels; to insure theaters remain “brave spaces” that will serve as lights in the coming years; to activate a network of people across the country working to support vulnerable communities. This is not a substitution for protests or direct action, but rather a pledge for continued vigilance and increased advocacy by the theater community across the country.
“A brave space” is defined as a space where:
– It is safe to be who you are, regardless of race, class, religion, country of origin, immigration status, (dis)ability, gender identity, or sexual orientation.
– Diverse opinions, dissent, and argument are not only tolerated, but invited.
– Active listening and courageous exchange are fundamental values.
– Collective action, activism, and community engagement, both within and outside the walls of the theater, are cultivated, encouraged, and supported.