Matthew Abaya, with I Don’t Care Productions, uploaded this video last week. The footage is of the last performance in the original Bindlestiff Studio space, at 185 6th Street in San Francisco, before moving to the interim alley space at 505 Natoma. Now, after eight years, we are triumphant and will make the trip back home to the original space. And Bindlestiff Studio will reopen their doors September 15th.
A short history of Bindlestiff Studio:
Bindlestiff Studio was founded in 1989 by Canadian artists Chrystene Ells, Chris Brophy, and a group of local theater artists and for many years flourished as an experimental theater space. In 1997, Allan S. Manalo, artistic director for the Filipino theater company Tongue In A Mood, became Bindlestiff’s artistic director. He transformed the theater into the cultural epicenter for Filipino-American performing arts in the Bay Area that exists today. In 2003, Bindlestiff lost its theater to the San Francisco Redevelopment Agency (SFRA) which acquired its building for a low-cost housing project. In reaction to public outcry for the theater’s preservation, SFRA committed to building the shell of a new 99-seat, black box theater for Bindlestiff in the basement of the newly rebuilt housing complex which is slated to open early 2011.
Below, Kat Evasco — Bakla Show Producer and Funds Director and Board Chair at Bindlestiff Studio — shares how she feels about the theater space and the importance of the community’s continued support of this space.