On a day that began with intense rain marring the much-anticipated Grace Farms opening, the skies finally cleared, allowing this incredible new center for nature, arts, community, justice and faith to be unveiled to the world.
An epic and visually stunning achievement of architecture fusing perfectly with nature, and including several structures all tied together by a winding, rising path, the Grace Farms initial day of celebration, Friday, Oct. 9, climaxed with a scintillating performance by singer/songwriter Aloe Blacc, who had the Sanctuary audience of 700 dancing non-stop.
Before the concert, in the Grace Farms Court, the famous Paul Taylor Dance Company, 14 strong, performed Promethean Fire, a staggeringly impressive half hour dance that led to a lengthy and well-deserved standing ovation.
The two shows were just the first of what should be a long and successful Grace Farms history in New Canaan. With 80 acres of open space, Grace Farms incorporates an 83,000-sq.-ft. multi-use building and covered walkway called the River, which the Pritzker Prize winning architectural studio SANAA designed to blend almost transparently into the surrounding woodlands, wetlands and meadows.
“All are welcome here, and that is really important to us,” said Sharon Prince, president of Grace Farms Foundation, before the concert began. “Starting with this stunning natural setting, we wanted to create a space that would communicate a sense of grace and peace. A place that would break down the barriers between people, and create new and unexpected outcomes. And often that can only happen of you take time, settle down and create a type B experience in a type A world. It’s been incredible to witness the transformation of this beautiful property into a place we call Grace Farms, where we can now join together for the common good.”