Two Rochester-area lifelong friends came up with a safe and creative solution for artists desiring to perform despite the pandemic.
At the Highland Park Bowl Wednesday evening, it was about sharing art.
“It creates an unspoken connection between people, because it can access those visceral parts we can’t even express,” said Julie Shapiro of Brighton.
Shapiro and Sara DiPasquale are childhood friends - and lovers of the arts.
“We grew up doing theater together. We were in Roc City Theaters,” Shapiro said.
Home from New York City where she went to school and performs, Sara connected with Julie about how much she missed the arts. And together the two came up with an idea: Art in Highland Park.
“We wanted this to be a safe place to collaborate. So we chose this spot because obviously there’s so much room to roam and play, and we have the stage which is a nice option, too,” DiPasquale said.
Wednesday was the first of a weekly event, where the community can come together to perform: music, improv…anything. It was an intimate group of four for the first meeting, but full of energy.
“I really missed doing artistic things, and being with artistic people. And I was hoping this would give me the opportunity to do that,” said Laura Zimmer of Pittsford.
And the women hope it only continues to grow.
“Hopefully we can have new faces showing up every week, same faces showing up, and just keep building it," DiPasquale said. "That’s definitely the goal, just having the Rochester community come together to collaborate.”
Now more than ever, all the women agree how important the arts are.
“Anything we can do to bring people together is going to be vital in the coming years honestly, after we recover from this situation," Zimmer said. "The arts are always important, but I think right now especially we need the human connection we’ve been lacking.”
Those interested can join them every Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. at the Highland Park Bowl.