On any given night, 1206 E. Colonial Dr. is a prime location to witness Orlando’s growing cultural impact. This artistic mecca is home to a variety of celebrations and group expression; punk shows, acoustic nights, yoga classes, poetry readings, and late-night ragers have all found a place in its continuously open door. The paradise I’m referring to is Orlando’s most cherished DIY venue, The Space. Since its inception, The Space has provided an outlet where anyone living in, or simply passing through, the Orlando community can hold a public or private event for a flexible, donation-based rental rate.
The idea of a place for us to teach in, to rehearse and play in that is kept afloat based on the efforts of the community is such a next-level, foreign concept for us. Maybe this is our chance to evolve as a unit and directly support each other’s passions and art forms.
– Addison Muha (Fiery Guitarist, Singer-Songwriter)
But, providing such a platform isn’t cheap. The Space continuously struggles to make rent and relies on the surrounding community to keep it afloat. This Saturday, Space Fest 2, a fundraising event featuring music, art, and tarot card readings, will raise money to help keep this dream a reality. Admission is $10, and every cent is going directly to The Space. In preparation for the event, I asked some of Saturday’s performers to give me their thoughts on one question: “Why is The Space important?” In my opinion, if we let The Space die, we are closer letting the Orlando music and art community fade away as well. Don’t let Mickey Mouse win. Enjoy.
I live in a city where we lost all of our venues that allow smaller, local bands to play, and because of that, our music scene has basically died out. Of course that would never happen to Orlando, but you guys can’t let the venues with such a good reputation as The Space die out. We all know how sad it was to see The Peacock Room go.
– Russell Nylen (Tiger Fawn Avant-Percussionist)
The Space is great asset to local music, as it enables and encourages community more than a regular venue would. It feels like our thing and a lot of people take pride in it.
– Dromes (Electro-pop Guru)
There is no other way to describe the importance of The Space other than using the word HOME. Home is wherever you can be you. Home is where you create your greatest memories with the greatest people you can encounter. Home doesn’t have to have the best of anything, as long as you make the best out of everything. The Space gives people a home who don’t have one. If you need a place to be free, and be yourself, The Space is the place to be.
– TKO (O-town Hip Hop Heavyweight)
DIY venues give local communities the ability to express their own unique brand/culture of weird; The Space embraces that mentality. But with that freedom comes the responsibility of preserving both the credibility and the physical condition of that place … Having something like The Space is a privilege, not a right. If it is treated as such, then we believe Orlando can further cultivate a community of creativity that will blow minds.
– Dani Lacerda (Tiger Fawn Vocalist)
[The Space] is a direct reflection of the community. How it’s doing, how it’s run, the shows that happen there, are all representative of how the music community (to be honest, how the entire artistic community) as a whole is doing … If The Space needs help, that’s a reflection of the music community.
– ARK (Multimedia Artist and Multi-Instrumentalist)