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Meet the Artist: Evita Colon

How did you get involved in the 2017 PA Governor’s Awards for the Arts?

I got involved through Rose Luciano of Fruition Collective, she asked me to do something. I was excited to be a part of it.

I already had a play scheduled for that week, Purple Cries for Blue Skies. I have two shows running October 21 and 22 downtown at the Ware Center both at 3 pm. So, it just fell upon me, and I just try to get more people involved from all over Lancaster.

What made you pursue art?

Art has always been an outlet for me. When I was younger I didn’t know how to express myself. It helped me breathe. My outlet has always been writing. I found more comfort in sharing my writing, so I lean more toward spoken word and writing production, which gave me a bigger platform to express the things I was going through and the people around me were going through. It was an evolution of me expressing myself.

Tell me about a current project:

I’m working on the production “Purple Cries for Blue Skies.” In this production, we’re using dance and spoken word to tell the story of those dealing with domestic violence. I’m really connected to this because I lost my mother to violence, and I’ve experienced emotional abuse, and I know so many people that have been affected by domestic violence. I feel very connected to this piece and I hope that it can empower people to leave toxic situations.

Are you a Lancaster native or transplant?

I was born and raised in Lancaster in the South East section. I just recently moved to Philadelphia to pursue art in a different space and just expand my reach. I just finished a play in Philly which was exciting for me. I was going back and forth between Lancaster and Philly.

What do you love about Lancaster / the Lancaster community?

I love the people and the community. I love the small community. We’re all connected in some way. I think the separation in Lancaster is very pertinent in the South East. People have helped me develop my brand and help me grow. I’ve always sought out advice and motivation from other people in the area. There are people from all different backgrounds in Lancaster and I’ve to use that to be empowered and uplifted, which is a great feeling.

As the art scene continues to grow in Lancaster, how have seen art develop and change over time?

It has grown a lot. I can’t even explain the evolution of art in Lancaster. When I was younger we didn’t have many spaces. I know my mother was an actress and did spoken word, but there was not a good variety of spaces where I could express myself and showcase our art. Lancaster has transformed into this hub of artistic expression.

Are you part of any groups or organizations in Lancaster?

I did a lot to build my organization in Lancaster, Speak to my Soul. We use performance art to empower, educate, and elevate. I started out speaking and performing in different spaces. In 2015, I did a hip-hop summit using hip-hop to start a dialogue about issues in the community. I’m always trying to find different ways to utilize art to bring about conversations. I started out giving back to my community and working with organizations such as Advantage Lancaster, and then it became a bigger thing where we can put on productions.

In what ways do you see art and community intersect in Lancaster?

Art is a platform to express ourselves and from that we are able to create a dialogue to talk about progress that needs to be made.

Do you have any hobbies or special interests?

I have a secret hobby, I love to cook and I want to be an amazing cook. I’m also a mom, so I like to do projects with my son. He’s amazing, kids are amazing with art in general. Their imaginations are unlimited.

Arts