ORLANDO, Florida – A new outdoor space in downtown Orlando brings live performances and jobs back to town.
What you need to know
- Frontyard Festival in front of the Dr. Phillps Center
- The event brought entertainment and jobs to downtown Orlando
- The event started last year and is now in its seventh week
The Frontyard Festival in front of the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts is on week seven and Saturday brought hundreds of people a safe live musical experience.
They have rhythm, they have music, they have security, say the actors – who could ask for more?
“To be able to share the music at this point is incredibly special because last year when we had to stop playing we weren’t sure when, how quickly, and in what capacity,” said Rimma Bergeron-Langois, concertmaster of the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra.
The orchestra played the music of George Gershwin on Saturday night.
It is just one of several shows on the venue lineup that Dr. Phillips Center say they are stopping the show.
“The Front Yard Festival is truly the first of its kind in the country, and there are very few places in the world where you would find anything like it,” said Lorri Shaban, spokesman for the Dr. Phillips Center.
With maximum capacity, the venue can safely accommodate 2,000 people, provided that there are 5 people in each socially distant public box. Other cities take notice and take notes.
“They look to Orlando and see what we could do together here and how they can recreate that in their cities,” Shaban said.
She says the venue’s seven weeks not only brought back art and culture, but brought back jobs as well.
The Dr. Phillips Center was able to bring back more than half of its employees on leave as a direct result of the Front Yard Festival, but for Bergeron-Langlois the greatest thing this venue brings is the experience of a live audience.
“The exchange we had with the audience during the live performance doesn’t come close to that. And as artists we really need this feedback, this exchange, it’s very important, “said Bergeron-Langois.
The Frontyard Festival opened its doors on December 10th. There’s a whole host of events going on over the coming weeks, including a performance by the band Foreigner and several other live music events.