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Community Spotlight: NewArts: Newtown Musicals

Art has long been a form of healing. After the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting on December 14, 2012 in Newtown, Connecticut, community members turned to the arts once again to help students cope with the tragedy. Community members knew the power of the performing arts in providing a powerful avenue for self-expression. And thus 12.14 Foundation and its performing arts division, NewArts: Newtown Musicals was born. The organization’s goal is to use performance pieces to help students gain confidence in a safe and nurturing environment and increase their overall understanding of themselves and how they interact with the world. 

12.14 Foundation has completed five large scale musicals, three of which involved the assistance of Broadway talent and Rose Brand materials and supplies. There are many local community theatre groups in the Newtown area, but according to Michael Unger, NY-Based Opera and Theatre Director and the organization’s Artistic Director, “We try to bring the highest possible level of production because these kids deserve it.” Their latest season of musicals had 20 theatre professionals from New York City who helped design, produce, and choreograph the production. 

Unger and his team, turned to Rose Brand to provide the products they needed in order to really impress the crowd. A favorite product has been the Kabuki drop system. Unger is a fan of the system, saying, "The simple magic of a Kabuki drop will never cease to thrill me. It's a simple device that's easy to assemble, but it adds so much impact to a production.  It brought the show to the next level.” In the latest production, the Kabuki system was used to drop a flag background for the finale. 

Here’s a glimpse of some of the students performing in the foundation’s latest production, Liberty Smith:

Rose Brand has worked with 12.14 Foundation by providing the Kabuki drop system along with various track systems for this production. We have also supplied various fabrics.

Where can you learn more?
www.1214foundation.org