Since 1999, Metta Theatre has worked in Taos with a mission of promoting all aspects of local performing arts while nurturing the talents of young people. To support the work of Metta Theatre, a local graphic designer and event organizer named Meda is organizing a "Meda 4 Metta" fundraising celebration.
"Meda 4 Metta" takes place Friday (March 16) at 7 p.m. at the Taos Mesa Brewing Mothership, 20 ABC Mesa Road. Admission is $10 and benefits Metta Theatre.
Metta Theatre offers weekly acting workshops for young people and provides acting and creative writing classes to local schools and the Taos County Juvenile Detention Center. In addition, Metta offers readings and productions of local playwrights, produces original and published plays, and operates a 36-seat black box theatre.
The venue is run by a board of directors. President Bruce McIntosh is a professional stage and film actor, playwright, screenwriter and director who leads weekly acting workshops and teaches classes for schools and the Juvenile Detention Center.
Asked what she likes best about Metta Theatre, Meda (who refers to herself by first name only) says, "First of all, Bruce is this amazing being who is just unassumingly giving himself away, really. That's his life. He's just doing it … What he does with the kids is unbelievable … He's a talented actor. He really is gifted. And, the way he's passing it to the next generation is just really fascinating."
Meda's daughter Petra takes classes at Metta Theatre. "It's her tribe … She says, 'Mom, I found my tribe,'" said Meda. Petra, who is also a visual artist, will be selling some of her watercolors at the show to benefit Metta Theatre.
The "Meda 4 Metta" extravaganza features a great line-up of local musicians.
Headlining the show is guitarist Chris Morel Sr., who plays a blend of blues, rock and country. Morel is part of the AMB Band with Bob Andrews and Brent Berry. He also plays around town with Charlie Woehler and his son Chris Morel Jr.
Also, performing is Willy-Nilly, an open-stage, open-hearted band where musicians can come in and out of the core group to add their talents to the mix.
"We call it a workshop-performance style. It's sort of a jamming of sorts. We invite people from the audience to participate … It's very eclectic,'" said Meda. "I sing in Romanian a lot, which is my native tongue. I was born in Romania … One song I sing is an old, ancient song, a love spell, thousands of years old probably."
Willy-Nilly started in August of 2017 with a group of musicians gathering at sunset at the Taos Junction Bridge near Pilar to play together. The core group for this show includes Meda, Ken McNamara, Ryan Nobody, Ra Paulette and Mary Rose.
Metta Theatre Young Artists will also be performing music that they study at Metta with Michelle McIntosh. In addition to performances, a raffle of gift cards to local businesses and a dynamic dance party will be held. The dance party starts at 9:30 p.m. with DJ Chrystalline.
"Expect the unexpected," says Meda. "There are a lot of different things happening." One of those is a birthday celebration! While Meda's actual birthday is in February, she is celebrating it on Friday (March 16) at the Meda 4 Metta event. "I love parties…. Especially good ones. I like to share that joy," said Meda.
For more information, call (575) 758-1104 or visit mettataos.dreamhosters.com