Irish step and Latin dancing, percussionists, free ice cream, yoga and more. All of this was jam-packed into the former Jackson Glass garage space this past Sunday as CityPOP Egleston held a grand opening.
CityPOP Egleston, is a pop-up art space, created by City Realty, the owner of the property at 3193 Washington St. CityPOP is a collaborative art space to assist emerging artists and CityPOP has more than seven artists-in-residence, who have contracts running through next April.
The afternoon kicked off, literally, by the JP Irish dancers led by Jackie O’Reilly with three step dancers Lauren Milford, Samantha Jones and Amanda Kerry, who moved in unison accompanied by a fiddler and squeeze box duo. O’Reilly gave the audience a brief lesson before inviting everyone up to join the dancers in a joyful performance.
One room over, Dolly Ameyda and Lynn Starakov presided over a group of young artists around a table who were drawing with crayons and paper. Ameyda leads afternoon programming at the Hernandez School and will be leading kids every day for four hours in that room beginning in mid-July.
Percussionist Maria Finkelmeier, one of the artists-in-residence, set up her white tubs and drumsticks and invited anyone who wanted to join her “and do what your heart tells you!” Finkelmeier invited the Irish step dancers and their fiddle player to join the percussion orchestra. The dancers picked up the rhythm of the impromptu drummers, the fiddler caught a riff and it all came together.
Back in the former auto glass garage, Carolina Prieto, City POP Egleston’s program manager, led the Caramelo Ladies Dance Performers with dancers Desire Areilo and Michelle Allison in a joyous Latin dance class for everyone who wanted to try to show their moves.
The former truck bays were lined with tables of food and displays by artists. The Hyde Square Task Force was also there to announce their summer arts program, which began the week before with the Latin American Spectacle.
Cagen Luse, of Roxbury, a graphic artist who runs 950 Design, displayed a rack of his his cards, posters and t-shirt designs — a favorite was Black Nerds Unite design.
Down the hall was Susan Lovett at her Hands and Heart Yoga center table. She closed out the afternoon with a yoga demonstration for everyone. Lovett will give free beginner yoga classes each Saturday in June at CityPOP Egleston.