Andrew Norlen (Photo Credit: Matthew Murphy), Book Cover, Matthew Murphy (Photo Credit: Matthew Murphy)
Zack Reiser
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July 23, 2021 11:15 AM

When The Lights Are Bright Again, the new book created by Andrew Norlen spotlighting the 2020-2021 theater shutdown will be published on Monday, November 1 by Applause Theatre & Cinema Books. The book features letters of loss, hope, and resilience from the theater community, paired with stunning portraiture from acclaimed Broadway photographer Matthew Murphy.

Pre-orders are now being accepted at www.WhenTheLightsAreBrightAgain.com and wherever books are sold, with a portion of the proceeds from each book going to The Actors Fund, the national human services organization for everyone in performing arts and entertainment.

Broadway notables such as Jerry Mitchell, Keala Settle, Ali Stroker, Sergio Trujillo, Eden Espinosa, Rob McClure, Robyn Hurder, Clint Ramos, Arian Moayed, Amber Iman, Andrew Barth Feldman, and more express their personal insights from the past year, alongside the desires and wishes of theater enthusiasts and other arts workers across the world, from Manila to Miami, Puerto Rico to Portland. When The Lights Are Bright Again is dedicated in loving memory to Nick Cordero.

It began as an artist’s desperate desire to express himself inside a worldwide pandemic, but in one year’s time it has grown into a theater industry and country-wide outlet for healing, grief, justice, and hope in the theater community.

The COVID-19 pandemic revealed what a world without live performance looks and feels like. This book captures a small fraction of the powerful and transcendent internal heartbeat that never went away within the theater community. When The Lights Are Bright Again immortalizes the stories, struggles, and successes of an industry that was the first to be shut down and one of the last to return.

Andrew Norlen weaves more than 200 letters from Broadway theater veterans, devout theatergoers, teenage dreamers aching for their day in the spotlight, long-time ushers, designers, creatives, and countless other arts workers with a brand-new, breathtaking photo series by Broadway photographer Matthew Murphy.

Not only has the creation of this book allowed the theater community to grieve and express themselves in a new way, but for every copy purchased, a portion of the profits will directly benefit The Actors Fund. This book will continue to help support arts workers to thrive and maintain financial stability for decades to come with every copy sold.

When The Lights Are Bright Again is a love letter to the arts community and every theatergoer, but, above all else, it is a meditation on the human experience. There is something for every broken, tired, angry, and lost soul inside this book: hope.

There is light in all of us—there always has been!

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Zack Reiser

Zack Reiser has a passion for theatre, cooking, and music. With professional experience in various roles in the Broadway community, he could tell you how theatre works from the front of the house to the back of the stage. He’s been with the Theatrely team since 2019.

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