This is a press release submitted to the Las Vegas Sun. It has not been verified or edited by the Sun.
Brooklyn Organization To Make History In Death Valley - A Festival of the Performing Arts at the Historical Amargosa Opera House
Published on Wed, Oct 31, 2012 (4:01 p.m.)
Brooklyn Organization To Make History In Death Valley
Spoke The Hub Dance & Fly Girl Productions
LIVE ART IN DEATH VALLEY
A Festival of the Performing Arts at the Historical
Amargosa Opera House, Death Valley Junction, CA
A Fundraiser to benefit Marta Becket & Amargosa Opera House
January 19 & 20
Brooklyn’s own Spoke The Hub Dance are the leaders in a historical, once-in-a-lifetime fundraising event for the famed Amargosa Opera House located in Death Valley, California. Spoke The Hub will travel West with a group of artists to present a weekend of dance, visual art, theater and film, exploring the heart of the desert in winter to raise funds for Becket’s self made, legendary venue and to play a part in helping to sustain one of americas performing arts treasures. T
The LIVE ART IN DEATH VALLEY Project, spearheaded by STH Founder/Artistic Director Elise Long, was dreamed up this past summer in response to a fundraising “call” from 87 year old Ms. Becket and her Amargosa Opera House newsletter, asking for help in raising desperately needed funds to save the Opera House and to continue Ms. Becket’s singular vision in Death Valley for years to come. Ms. Long, who grew up in Silicon Valley, CA, credits a National Geographic article she read as a high school student about Ms. Becket and her desert Opera House enterprise as being partially responsible for inspiring the artistic path Long herself has since pursued for the last 35 years in the “outback” of Brooklyn. In gratitude for this inspiration so many years ago, Ms. Long would like to say “thank you” to Ms. Becket by helping her raise money as well as to introduce her to one strand of her inspirational “legacy” which has grown up in Brooklyn.
The historical Amargosa Opera House was founded by Marta Becket in 1967 after a flat tire forced her and her husband to take a detour to Death Valley Junction for repairs. While waiting for a new tire, Ms. Becket started to explore the nearby old Adobe buildings, peeking inside one she noticed a stage with faded curtains, wood benches and warped floors, it was a theater. "Peering through the tiny hole, I had the distinct feeling that I was looking at the other half of myself. The building seemed to be saying.....Take me.....do something with me...I offer you life" - Marta Becket
Ms. Becket gave her first performance in the theater in February 10th, 1968 and since then performances have been given every Friday, Saturday and Monday night. In 1970, journalists from National Geographic discovered Becket doing a performance at the Amargosa Opera House without an audience and photographed her for the magazine propelling the theater into becoming a tourist hotspot with audiences traveling from far and wide to visit Becket’s unique pocket of creativity.
The Fundraiser, which already has several performance groups and artists from New York and California taking part, will happen in Death Valley January 19 & 20. The current artist roster includes: Brooklyn dancers Erin Gottwald, Marlena Oden, Sarah Pope, Ellynne Skove, and Mindy Toro; LA performance artist and film-maker Sulai Lopez; San Diego visual artists and installation creators, Cindy and David Krimmel; Brooklyn film-maker Femi Agana; NYC yoga teacher, opera enthusiast and writer, Mina Hamilton; plus independent volunteers Lucy Walters, Jeremy Lintz, David Webb, Kerry Kresge, and Kathy McGrath.
Spoke the Hub’s mission is to nurture both individual and community health and happiness through providing the general public with affordable creative arts study, contemplation, and practice opportunities of the highest caliber.