Monday, July 20, 2009
I never went to Artscape until this weekend. I always thought it too hot and, in what now seems cynical folly, always thought that is was either light on the arts and heavy on the funnel cake, or too esoteric. I'm happy to admit I was wrong, and I'm super proud of my city. Artscape, from the perspective of the AOT booth, was a great melting point. I got to meet folks from all different backgrounds and all different ages. Right outside our booth on Sunday an African drumming circle and I saw people of different races, ages, and creeds dancing with each other. For all the talk that goes around the opera community about reaching out to new audiences, this weekend I felt we were really doing it as all sorts of people visited us, expressed their joy at opera surviving in Baltimore, and signed up for tickets for next year. Even more, at our, admitedly difficult, performance on Sunday the diverse group of young and old and black and white and rich and poor that were enthused by the performance gladdened my heart. So, I can't believe I'm going to be so hokey as to write this, but BALTIMORE BELIEVE!