With thousands of people in the streets for Black Lives Matter demonstrations in recent weeks, there’s been a movement across the country for theaters shuttered by the pandemic to open their lobby areas to support protestors. One space in downtown Albuquerque has answered that call.
Several arts groups call the space at 110 Gold Avenue SW home, and they’ve come together to make their lobby available each night for anyone out protesting police violence and racism.
“That seemed like one little thing that we could do to help the movement out,” says Amelia Ampuero, artistic director with Duke City Repertory Theatre.
Ampuero says there’s a natural affinity with activism, because theater holds up a mirror to humanity.
“I can't really think of a better time to be holding up that mirror than right now,” she says. “There's also a chance for us as theater professionals to really examine where we have upheld white supremacy and are own anti-people of color, anti-black practices.”
Juli Hendren, executive director of Tricklock, says the park-like spot they created outside is already familiar to people spending time in the area.
“We're a place for people to come in and be safe and cared for, and so I think it's just extending out with the protest and we'll do it as long as we can,” she says.
Hendren says this time is a reminder that good theatres don't just make plays, they also help build safe and healthy communities. The lobby will be open through at least June 21st.