“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” – Martin Luther King Jr.
Below is a list of Anti-Inauguration activities — some of the events initiated by artists to turn the feelings of shock at the outcome of the Presidential election into a a show of solidarity and protest that is intended as prelude to ongoing resistance:
2 p.m., January 15
Steps of Main Branch of the New York Public Library
PEN America’s literary protest on the steps of the New York Public Library will bring together hundreds of writers and artists alongside thousands of New Yorkers on the birthday of Civil Rights icon Martin Luther King, Jr. Broadway Kids Against Bullying sing “I Have a Voice” (More than 90 other Writers Resist protests are scheduled at the same time throughout the U.S.)
January 4 to 15
A variety show, put together by The Dirty Blondes theater collective, featuring 10-new plays, stand-up comedy, music and poetry. Proceeds donated to the American Civil Liberties Union.
January 19 at 5:30 p.m.
Many locations throughout the nation and the city
Inspired by the tradition of leaving a “ghost light” on in a darkened theater, theaters in (as of this writing) 43 states (around 50 in New York City alone) have agreed to hold some kind of ceremony at 5:30 p.m. (in each time zone) “to stand for and protect the values of inclusion, participation, and compassion for everyone-regardless of race, class, religion, country of origin, immigration status, (dis)ability, gender identity, or sexual orientation.” They ask you to bring a light.
(The photographs above of theater artists holding posters “I am….I fight for” is part of the Ghostlight Project.)
More than 100 visual artists and critics have signed a petition calling for cultural institutions to close on Friday, January 20.
“We consider Art Strike to be one tactic among others to combat the normalization of Trumpism—a toxic mix of white supremacy, misogyny, xenophobia, militarism, and oligarchic rule. Like any tactic, it is not an end in itself, but rather an intervention that will ramify into the future. It is not a strike against art, theater, or any other cultural form. It is an invitation to motivate these activities anew, to reimagine these spaces as places where resistant forms of thinking, seeing, feeling, and acting can be produced.”
This has not gotten much traction, according to an article in the New York Times.
“The struggle is long, and I would say it is not our role to close,” said Tom Eccles, the executive director of Bard College’s Center for Curatorial Studies. The Whitney Museum, for one, will remain open, but will implement pay-what-you-wish admission.
January 20, noon
A concert of two of Hillary Clinton’s speeches set to music, and sung by such Broadway performers as Chilina Kennedy of “Beautiful.”
January 20, 3 p.m.
Town Hall and Facebook.
A concert featuring a parade of Broadway stars — Betty Buckley, Brian Stokes Mitchell, Jessie Mueller, Javier Munoz, Kelli O’Hara, Billy Porter and on and on. The proceeds for “Concert for America: Stand Up, Sing Out” will be donated evenly to Planned Parenthood, NAACP, Sierra Club Foundation, Southern Poverty Law Center, and the National Immigration Law Center. While the concert is reported to be sold out, it will be streamed live on Facebook as well. It’s intended to be the first in a series of monthly benefit concerts and will be streamed live on Facebook.
“Hate comes from a lack of love, so we can’t fight it with more of its own toxicity, we have to fill it with love,” Jessie Mueller told the Associated Press. “There are really big things at stake. Things we can’t save or solidify or safeguard alone. We have to think bigger, we have to ask for help, we have to reach out to one another and band together. I hope this concert can be an example of that.”
January 20 – February 17
HERE Arts Center
“The Sanctuary Project opens on January 20th with an Inaugural Ball” (at 8:30 p.m.) “and continues with a full month of work by more than 50 different artists from a wide range of backgrounds. The schedule includes new theater works; panel discussions with major arts leaders; and a variety of dance, concert, and other non-traditional works.” A play entitled “Radical,” by Sergio Castillo, presented on January 25th, “imagines a world where American Fascism has become the law of the land.” Another play, by S.P. Monahan, presented on January 26, is entitled “The Persecution and Assassination of Hillary Rodham Clinton as Performed by the Inmates of the Asylum of Charenton Under the Direction of the Marquis de Sade.”
January 21,, 10 a.m. to 1:15 p.m.
Though not artist-organized, it would be difficult to omit what promises to be the largest protest march around the Inauguration. The march “is for any person, regardless of gender or gender identity, who believes women’s rights are human rights.”
There are local chapters, such as the New York City chapter of the Women’s March on Washington , so that people can travel to D.C. as a group. There are also Sister Marches being held throughout the country and abroad (370 as of this writing.)