MFA outdoor programming highlights artists of color
The Museum of Fine Arts has begun hosting a series of free outdoor and online programming during the month of September, including film screenings co-presented with Roxbury International Film Festival and Boston Latino International Film Festival and online concerts with local musicians.
The series kicked off with “Remember the Titans,” a classic story about the first racially integrated high school football team to win a state championship.
“Twenty years later, the film’s message is just as relevant today,” says Lisa Simmons, artistic director of Roxbury International Film Festival, “and can provide an opportunity for dialogue and conversation like the over 60 powerful and inspiring films we will be screening at ROXFILM this fall.”
The next film screened outdoors will be “Selena” on Sept. 17, the biographical story of the famous Tejano star Selena Quintanilla whose promising career was cut tragically short. Virtual concerts will include Anjimile and Oompa on Sept. 11 and Miranda Rae and Naomi Westwater on Sept. 25, all musicians of color. The concerts will be streamed from the MFA’s Calderwood Courtyard to bring a sense of the museum into concertgoers’ homes.
For in-person events, advance ticket registration is required, and a limited number of tickets are available. The events take place in the MFA’s Fenway parking lot and require all guests to wear masks and follow social distancing practices. Hand sanitizing stations will be available, and each film has an alternate rain date. Movie-watchers can bring their own blankets and chairs and non-alcoholic picnics to enjoy during the film.
Later in the month, a virtual edition of the Roxbury International Film Festival will take place online on the MFA’s website, where viewers can stream narrative, documentary, short and student films by artists of color at home. As in previous years, film lovers can buy passes for the whole festival or individual tickets for films. A webinar is available on the Roxbury International Film Festival website explaining how the festival will translate in an online space.
Makeeba McCreary, the MFA’s Patti and Jonathan Kraft Chief of Learning and Community Engagement, says, “We’re excited to offer our spaces … for Bostonians to enjoy the art of film and music together. We’re proud to continue our partnerships with the Roxbury International Film Festival and Boston Latino International Film Festival and to support local musicians at a time when there are so few opportunities to enjoy live performances.”
These programs are the museum’s first steps into welcoming the public back, but as of Sept. 6, the MFA had yet to announce a formal reopening date.