Nominated for Best Nonprofit.
As we approach our upcoming 6th Anniversary in September, Break a Leg Theater Works is honored to be nominated for best non-profit organization on the South Shore for the 2021 Readers’ Choice with the Patriot Ledger!
As we reflect on a year filled with a great deal of adversity for small businesses across the globe, we are thrilled to be one of 6 nonprofits in contention by the greater Boston community for this distinction.
Triumph Through Adversity
When the pandemic struck the world, we here at BAL didn’t spend a lot of time sitting around––we rolled up our sleeves, immediately pivoted and began brainstorming ways to make an impact on our students and our community by providing extraordinary experiences in the performing arts. With the majority of performing arts programs taking a pause, we knew how vital it was to find ways to build community safely, and to keep our students engaged and mindful of their emotional well being and mental health. We wanted them to know that they were not alone as they processed the pandemic and that we could still find ways to be together and focus on our craft while having fun with our friends and forgetting about the anxiety we all felt for a little while.
Here is a glimpse into how we did that.
What We Have Accomplished
Nolan Gibbons Scholarship for Equity & Inclusion
After the sudden and tragic passing of our friend and colleague, Nolan Gibbons with the help and blessing of his parents, BAL Board Member Warren and his wife Sheila, we established The Nolan Gibbons Scholarship for Equity and Inclusion. We talked about all the things that mattered to Nolan, who really wanted to see a more inclusive and accepting world for everyone. This scholarship is meant to open opportunities for deserving students who exhibit a passion and interest for the performing arts and to provide a platform to help them pursue that passion.
"Everybody likes to be themselves."
Our first recipient of the Nolan Gibbons scholarship was Brockton High School’s own Geovanny Antunes. When Geovanny joined Break a Leg Theater Works in the iconic role of Ben in our production of Night of the Living Dead, The Musical it was as if he had been with us all along. Not only did he make a stellar BAL debut in the role, but he was such an inspiring and charming presence in every way offstage as well.
When Geovanny heard Nolan's single, “I Just Wanna Be in Love” released posthumously, for the first time, he said, “Wow, I feel like I know Nolan and that we would have been friends.” Yes, you would have Geo. Geovanny will be continuing his studies at UMass Amherst where he will major in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. Other iconic moments at BAL are his portrayal of Feldzieg in The Drowsy Chaperone, and his charming performance of Donny Hathaway’s “This Christmas" in “Sounds of the Season."
Break a Leg next year Geo, thank you for sharing your gifts with BAL!
Break a Leg Theater Works was honored to perform at the first annual NolanFest, a celebration of his life and legacy on what would have been his 16th birthday weekend. You can donate to The Nolan Gibbons Scholarship for Equity and Inclusion by clicking here. You may also purchase Nolan’s four released singles ("I Just Wanna Be in Love," "My Turn," "Audio," and "Burden") on all streaming platforms. A portion of the proceeds go to causes near and dear to Nolan’s heart.