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BE THE LIGHT: Marquee Lighting to be held at the Roxy Regional Theatre on Tuesday, June 9th

 

A Message from Roxy Regional Theatre Executive Director Ryan Bowie

Clarskville's Roxy Regional TheatreClarksville, TN – The world continues to be a crazy place, one of uncertainty and confusion for many. Over the last several months, the Roxy Regional Theatre has temporarily closed its doors and suspended productions, and will continue to do so for the next several months, to ensure the safety of our staff, talent and patrons during the COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic.

But here we are, still battling a virus that continues to kill innocent lives daily, facing another pandemic, INEQUALITY. In light of the events in Minneapolis, I found myself in utter disbelief that we, as a society, have not grown or changed in any way.

Roxy Regional Theatre Executive Director Ryan Bowie

Roxy Regional Theatre Executive Director Ryan Bowie

When I began to lead the Roxy Regional Theatre, now four years ago, I pledged, very publicly, that the Roxy Regional Theatre would be a safe place for all. A safe place for our dedicated staff, a safe place for our talented performers, a safe place for our committed patrons and a safe place for our eager students.

A few seasons ago, I used the tagline, “Theatre You Can’t Resist,” and this season we use the tag line, “Experience A New Story.”

Why?

We have a vision of complete inclusivity between all races, genders, sexual orientations and backgrounds in our theatre. We have a vision of complete acceptance and willingness to change from the patrons who support our productions and our mission. But sometimes it requires us to take an honest look outside of our “normal” to LISTEN and EMPATHIZE and RECOGNIZE and implement CHANGE. These core words have gone into choosing some of the productions that have graced the Roxy stage the last several seasons, because theatre has always been meant to challenge us and make us think to hopefully bring about that change.

I have had tears streaming down my face on multiple occasions over the last several months due to the uncertainty of when we will reopen. However, no tear has made me think more than the ones I have shed over the loss of innocent life and the continued disgraceful and heinous acts in our country. And with those tears I have found myself thinking, “Are we doing enough?”

I do not think I can answer that question for myself. I think time will allow the answer to reveal itself and I have to allow that “time” to work. But I do know that I will continue to push the Roxy Regional Theatre to bring about POSITIVE CHANGE, DEDICATED THOUGHT and LASTING UNITY.

I will continue to lead the Roxy Regional Theatre with an attitude of complete inclusion. But, to be completely transparent and from the hearts of everyone at the Roxy Regional Theatre, BLACK LIVES MATTER. We hope to continue to live in a UNITED States of America, but right now we are NOT united. So our mission will remain the same, to present first rate, professional theatre to Clarksville-Montgomery County and Middle Tennessee with an emphasis on education, but now with a special focus on how we can UNITE our community on multiple fronts, emphasizing the importance that BLACK LIVES MATTER.

Our first step in this direction will be Tuesday, June 9th, 2020, at 5:00pm outside of the Roxy Regional Theatre (100 Franklin Street) with our BE THE LIGHT: Marquee Lighting. It took only nine minutes — I will say it again, NINE MINUTES — to violently end the life of George Floyd, an action which we condemn. In honor of his memory and legacy, the Roxy Regional Theatre will light our iconic marquee for exactly nine minutes of silence.

 


 

We hope that attendees will use that time as a brief moment of honest reflection and a renewed dedication to positive change and the devotion to BEING THE CHANGE. We will be joined by local leaders for positive words and messages following the lighting of the marquee. (ATTENDEES ARE STRONGLY ENCOURAGED TO WEAR MASKS/FACE COVERINGS AND TO USE APPROPRIATE DISTANCING as we recognize the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.)

In the weeks to come, we will announce a newly formed vision and slate of productions for our upcoming SEASON 38: DON’T DREAM IT – BE IT! As the theatre itself remains dark for the next several months, don’t forget about us, support us. When we reopen in September, we need your support to implement this change and dedication for a better tomorrow — because, in the end, ALL life matters regardless of race, religion, gender, sexual orientation or backgrounds.

I hope you will join us on Tuesday, June 9th, and, more importantly, join us in solidarity. #blacklivesmatter


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