WASHINGTON – Forterra presents its seventh annual Ampersand LIVE event, a one-night showcase that celebrates Pacific Northwest art, storytelling, science, activism, dancing and more. Join Ampersand LIVE from your favorite streaming device on Thursday, October 29 from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Each act will explore this year’s theme of restoration. Ampersand LIVE is free and entirely virtual for all to enjoy. Register online at forterra.org/AmpersandLIVE.
Each fall, Forterra brings to life its biannual magazine, Ampersand, in a fast-moving show called Ampersand LIVE. In its seventh year, Ampersand LIVE will feature 10 acts of poetry, music, dancing, science, film and more. This year’s theme of restoration will explore the renewal and healing qualities of nature and community connection. Tomo Nakayama, the curator for Ampersand LIVE, says the restoration theme is in response to some of the challenges highlighted in 2020.
“To me, restoring the land goes hand in hand with restoring our society and to addressing the systemic issues in our country,” said Nakayama. “We’re in a moment of history that has dual pandemics: COVID-19 and racism. It has opened our eyes to the root problems we must address in order to heal and restore our nation and our planet.”
Ampersand LIVE weaves together the connections between land and people. Forterra filmed some of the acts at the Morse Wildlife Preserve, a restored area jointly managed by Forterra and Tahoma Audubon Society. Nakayama chose acts that not only reflect racial and gender diversity, but a variety of styles, art and unique perspectives.
“I wanted to bring diversity to the forefront, but go beyond representation,” said Nakayama. “I looked for people who are forging unique paths in their respective fields and held a certain passion, curiosity and knowledge in their acts.”
One artist featured this year will be Amanda Morgan, the only Black member of Pacific Northwest Ballet, who is choreographing an original dance piece set in the Morse Wildlife Preserve. Other acts range from a naturalist who will take the viewer on a birding journey through her eyes to a punk-comic-fairytale inspired theatrical ensemble.
“We’re grateful to Tomo and the artists for their gifts of insight, inspiration and wisdom,” said Forterra President & CEO Michelle Connor. “We invite everyone to join us at Forterra in listening, learning and reflecting on how we can restore this place we love, so that it can be a place for all.”
Viewers can watch all acts from the comfort of their home, at their favorite park or anywhere with a connection to a streaming device. The event is free and any donations will support Forterra, a Washington-based nonprofit focused on conserving land, developing innovative policies and supporting sustainable rural and urban development. Registered attendees who make a donation of $60 or more will receive a print copy of Forterra’s upcoming Ampersand Magazine. Register online at forterra.org/AmpersandLIVE.
Managing Director of Media Relations and Storytelling, Forterra
Forterra is a Washington-based nonprofit that enhances, supports, and stewards the region’s most precious resources — its communities and its ecosystems. Forterra conserves and stewards land, develops innovative policies, and supports sustainable rural and urban development. In its 30-year history, Forterra has helped conserve more than 250,000 acres. Its work stretches from the farmlands and river canyons of Yakima to the estuaries and forests of Washington’s coastline, reaching more than 100 counties, cities, and towns. Visit www.forterra.org.