For Sonja Bogensperger, there's no better way to connect the community than through art.
Bogensperger, deputy director of Miami’s Downtown Development Authority, is spearheading the fourth annual Art Days this Friday through Sunday. She wants to show locals and tourists that Miami's arts district is a force to be reckoned with.
"It started out as a collaboration between many downtown arts organizations to find a way to show that there is arts and culture happening year around here," she said. "It's become very fluid, and every year we talk about what we can adjust to have it evolve more."
This year it will showcase 60 different events, exhibits, installations and performances throughout Miami's downtown area, many with interactive elements for attendees to get involved in. "We've realized that anything interactive has been a great hit," she said. "Our goal is to get people engaged and together over art."
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Bogensperger warns that meticulous planning will be needed to experience the three-day event to the fullest.
"Every event you'll see is only taking place this weekend," she said. "If you don't see them this year, you'll miss them because events change every year," she said. Go online to dwntwnartdays.com or check out their smartphone app for the most up-to-date version of its calendar, where you can also create your own personal itinerary.
So grab your phone, download the app, and schedule what we think will be the best events this year.
- The WLRN Arts Radio Project at WLRN Studio: Tour the award winning public radio and television station and learn why WLRN is one of the most trusted media sources around. The exhibit will also feature a “National Day of Listening” recording area where visitors can record stories about how the arts have impacted their lives. Selected stories will be used to create an hour-long special program, which will air on 91.3 WLRN the day after Thanksgiving, or during the station's Sunday Breakfast with the Arts once a month September through November.
- Mobility Orientation Tour at Miami Center for Architecture and Design: Close your eyes and heighten your other senses through a guided, blindfolded tour of the Old U.S. Post Office and Courthouse, currently the Miami Center for Architecture and Design. Explore the way individuals with visual impairments experience our city’s architecture. To RSVP, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Schmooze Over Miami: Time Travel Pub Crawl at Biscayne Tavern: Drink your way through downtown Miami during a theatrical walking tour with The Front Yard Theatre Collective. Each tour stop represents a different decade with its own 10-minute performance based on life in Miami during that era. Costumes are welcomed.
- Sound Lab: Knight Concert Hall Acoustic Experience at Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts: Experience a one-hour sensory workshop exploring the hall's adjustable acoustical canopy, curtains and banners, acoustics control chamber and chamber doors, which can all be controlled to suit a variety of performance types, from lightly amplified pop and jazz to full-blown rock concerts. Workshops will be led by one of the nationally-recognized architectural acousticians who designed Knight Concert Hall’s sound system.
SketchMIA at Miami Center for Architecture and Design: Look at Miami's historic downtown area through the eyes of an architect. Learn to draw by sketching some of the city's landmarks, like the Dade County Courthouse, the Church of Gesù and the old US Post Office Building. The two-hour course is open to beginners and novices of all ages. Local architects and educators Joaquim Perez from the University of Miami and David Rifkind from Florida International University, will teach basic drawing techniques and lead the sketching tour adventure.