We are beautiful together.
The city beautiful is home to a rich diversity of artists and arts groups who came together to inspire the community toward a place of healing and hope.
Over 50 arts groups including area theaters, dance companies, choirs, bands, orchestras, and visual arts groups joined with individual artists and backstage personnel to create a meaningful evening to share their vision of how the community is beautiful together.
“We are here to serve our community in good times and bad,” said Eric Jacobsen, music director of the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra. “In the wake of these senseless and horrific acts of violence, art and music affords us the space to come together and feel the healing of humanity."
The desire to serve the community and to pour their grief into artistic expression came almost immediately as the difficult events of the weekend of June 11 & 12 unfolded. By 9 a.m. Monday morning, leaders of local arts groups had connected and were meeting at CFCArts offices. The compassion for the groups, such as Orlando Gay Chorus, that were already out serving the community was immediate. Action items from that meeting were to develop a support system for families and friends needing musicians and readers at memorial services, which was set up immediately through CFCArts. By the end of the meeting, a plan was formed to create a benefit performance, a show flow and theme was cooperatively created, and a distribution list of arts groups started.
As the week went on, any arts groups that wanted to participate called in and were immediately added to the list. Each group came with the understanding that to create one performance, not everyone would be able to be onstage, but there would be somewhere and some way to serve. Taking the organizational lead on the project were Joshua Vickery of Central Florida Community Arts, Cole NeSmith of Creative City Project, Mitzi Maxwell of Mad Cow Theater, Robert Hill of Orlando Ballet, Scott Galbraith of Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts, Emily Russell of Garden Theatre, theater director Juan Cantu, and Eric Jacobsen of Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra.
The evening’s program included visual arts and modern dance interpretations in the lobby pre-show. Following the performance in the Walt Disney Theater, the audience exited to the memorial site on the Seneff Arts Plaza and to Angel Action Wings for Orlando ringing the plaza with candles.
Simple Gifts By Joseph Brackett arr. Aaron Copland Mass Choir and Orchestra
Greeting By Michael Wanzie
Luis Martinez, director of Diversity City of Orlando
No Voy a Decirte Adios By Alfareros Zoraida Rosario-Elmore Guitar Steve Luciano
By Philip Glass
Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra Leesa Castaneda Mike Acevedo Paul Castaneda
The Dying Swan By Saint Säens Orlando Ballet based on original by Mikhail Fokine Kate- Lynn Robichaux
This is My Wish/Let There Be Peace By Kevin Ross. Jill Jackson Miller and Sy Miller arr. Voctave
Somewhere By Leonard Bernstein & Stephen Sondheim Philip King vocal director/accompanist Catie Pires-Fernandez Crystal Lizardo Bert Rodriguez Erick Perafan Jasmine Forsberg Juan Cantu Shawn Kilgore
True Colors By Cyndi Lauper Orlando Gay Chorus Mass Choir and Orchestra
Let It Be By Paul McCartney Melanie Galiardo Mass Choir and Orchestra
Still I Rise By Maya Angelou Fredy Ruiz
Adagio for Strings By Samuel Barber Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra
Love Sonnet LXXXIX By Pablo Neruda Jim Braswell Eliana Stratico
By Philip Glass
Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra
All Is Well Traditional (arr. Nico Muhly) Aoife O'Donovan
Somewhere Over the Rainbow By Harold Arlen & E.Y. Harburg Aoife O'Donovan Mass Choir and Orchestra
Bridge Over Troubled Water By Paul Simon Mass Choir and Orchestra
Goodnight By Cole NeSmith & Alice Smetheram Given by Luis Martinez, director of Diversity City of Orlando
You’ll Never Walk Alone By Richard Rodgers & Oscar Hammerstein II Mass Choir and Orchestra