February 10, 2022
We all have unique ways to ignite our passions and recharge the batteries. Of course, we love what we do everyday at Beth Singer Design: using our strategic and creative skills to bring our clients’ communication, fundraising, and engagement efforts to new heights. But in honor of Valentine’s Day, we’d like to confide where our hearts lie when we are off the clock.
Looking for Urban Beauty Within
by Howard Smith
At the height of the pandemic lockdowns, I took 5-mile walks through downtown neighborhoods — some familiar and others not. Walking through Georgetown was particularly depressing; no cars and not many people. 7-Eleven was open, but that was about it. Many storefronts were boarded up due to store closures and the potential for vandalism and looting. Much of the plywood was covered with posters (often partly torn down) and graffiti-ized.
One day I looked more closely at those boards — and saw remarkable patterns, colors, and compositions. I shot photos with my iPhone; my only requirement was that some plywood must be showing. No manipulation or color correction was needed to make these images striking. I felt I had discovered these fragments of beauty within — or perhaps even created by — the tough times we were going though, both individually and as a nation.
by Amy Billingham
Scenes from Woolly Mammoth Theater: As Far As My Fingertips Take Me, an unusual production in which you put your arm through a hole in a wall and the artist drew on it while you listened to the story; lighting workshop; lobby “experience” for American Utopias; Woolly’s values statement
One of my favorite things about DC is its vibrant theater community. From Broadway-bound productions to intimate monologues, from classic plays to world-premieres that comment on current culture — the quality and variety never disappoint me. I am especially captivated by creative staging, settings, and production design.
Most DC theaters also offer engaging experiences beyond the stage, including lobby displays, thoughtful and educational essays, and other audience resources. I have attended many post-show discussions with the cast and/or creative team, as well as excellent workshops on behind-the-scenes design topics.
I have subscribed to Woolly Mammoth, Arena Stage, the Folger Theatre, Shakespeare Theatre, Studio Theatre, Rorschach Theatre, We Happy Few, Constellation Theatre, and Round House, and have attended shows at many others — so I’m not kidding when I say I’m an avid theatergoer! I’ll occasionally see the big traveling productions at the Kennedy Center or take the train to NYC to catch a show (or three) — which I also enjoy — but my heart belongs to our local DC theaters.
Live Music with a Side of Chill
by Lisa DiConsiglio
My motto has always been “There’s nothing better than live music on a sunny day.” In 2020, it became “There’s nothing better than live music in a parking lot, a backyard, or brewery — as long as it’s above 40 degrees.”
I am now 100% willing to endure the cold, shaking my booty to keep warm, as long I can hear a good band with a booty-shaking vibe.
I feel blessed to be part of a community that is willing to layer up on bone-chilling nights and gather in nearby parking lots to listen to our favorite bands. These outdoor concerts are really a win-win-win. Venues make money on food and drinks, patrons get the safe musical outing they crave, and musicians can play in front of a live audience and recoup some lost revenue.
Live music has been my pandemic salvation. When one of my favorite bands announces a tour, the simple act of adding it to my calendar gives me hope for the future. It makes the sacrifices of the last two years fade away on a Bo Diddley beat.
The Gift of Being a Daughter
by Beth Singer
Recently, my two siblings and I have been helping our father, Burt, with the details of his still very active life — at age 89 — in NY where I grew up. It’s become a serious part-time job! Three months ago, Burt agreed to move just up the street from Howard and me, to a senior community, and will become a resident of Arlington, Virginia next month.
I’ve learned a lot about love and aging these past couple of years. Here are some key takeaways: (1) It’s painfully tough to get your hero to give up driving, but that’s what love looks like when you realize that reaction time and eyesight just aren’t the same anymore. (2) Artistic pleasures like painting and music activate endorphins and help us all focus better, especially seniors. (3) Sometimes it’s better to let certain conversations defy logic and give yourself over to a free-form dialogue. It’s very liberating!
I realize that it’s a gift to have these happy times with Dad ahead, now that he will be so nearby for the first time in my adult life.
This is how WE connect the dots between love, work, and play — but we also want to hear what YOU do for love. Please message us on any of our social media channels using #WhatWeDo4Love — we would LOVE to feature friends of BSD in a future blog post!