April 12, 2021

Rockwell Group Designs Pop-Up Stages in New York City for Outdoor Performances

A rendering of an OpenStage NYC set up in the middle of a street. Image courtesy of Rockwell Group.

The streets of New York City are many things and, as of late, they happen to be the center of public gatherings. To position the city for the safe return of live events, Rockwell Group partnered with event producer TAIT to create a series of outdoor stages for OpenStage NYC. For a quick-deploying solution, the design team envisioned a series of portable and easily reconfigurable staging systems that allow for a 50-person, socially distanced audience. “The idea of spaces that can transform in some way is very much in our DNA,” shares Michael Fischer, studio leader at Rockwell Group, pointing out that the DineOut NYC booths “catalyzed a rethinking of how public spaces could be reallocated from the automobile-dominated sphere to spaces that people could occupy.”

As for event programing, Rockwell Group and TAIT are working closely with arts organizations in the Bronx, Brooklyn, and Queens, such as the Bronx Academy of Arts and Dance and the LaGuardia Performing Arts Center, to ensure performance groups in those areas have access to the open-air stages. Additionally, all revenue generated through this project will benefit the participating arts organizations through OpenStage NYC.

“The notion of a kind of pop-up performance space to literally put theater in the streets felt like a natural move for us,” Fischer says. Image courtesy of Rockwell Group.
An imagined park gathering. Image courtesy of Rockwell Group.

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