Leaving a single light on in a dark theatre is a time-honored tradition. Now, the ghost light, as it's known, has taken on symbolic meaning to describe the role of theatre in an uncertain age. The Ghostlight Project is a national movement created through local roots. On the eve of the presidential inauguration, theatre troupes and the communities they serve will gather at the River Arts District's Magnetic 375 beginning at 5:30 pm. They will open a discussion about how the arts, and theatre in particular, can help shape a brighter future by representing voices from the diverse communities that make up Asheville, and the nation as a whole.
The goal of the organizers is to discuss "theatre’s role in sustaining 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." The evening's plans include a moderated discussion, which will be followed by a more informal conversation about Asheville's role in the national organization and the movement's mission. The meeting will also allow time for conversation about how best to include Ghostlight's values into future theatrical works.
With its goals of inclusivity, openness, and diverse representation, the Project resonates with many local theatres. Abby Felder, of Asheville Creative Arts, notes that “[t]he Ghostlight Project is an important movement that asks us to examine and articulate our values as institutions, and what we see as the role of theatre in promoting space, both physically and intellectually, where we may gather and have open communication.” According to the Magnetic Theatre's Steven Samuels, “Theatre has always aimed at illuminating deep truths about who we are as individuals and how we function as a society. The Magnetic Theatre is pleased to partner with ACA and countless theatres nationwide as a safe space for this important discussion by and for our communities.”
The "evening of discourse and community" will take place at the Magnetic Theatre (375 Depot St.) from 5:30-6:30 this Thursday. RSVP to reserve your free spot by writing to firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information, visit www.ashevillecreativearts.org, www.themagnetictheatre.org, or call 914-830-3000.