Interview

Matthew J. Ferrara

November 8, 2023

By Terrence Brunn

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Donor Spotlight Series—Meet Matt Ferrara!

Matthew J. Ferrara
Matthew J. Ferrara

Matt Ferrara attended the University of Colorado at Boulder where he studied Western Philosophy, English Literature, and Buddhism. His ongoing studies continue at the Shri K. Pattabhi Jois Ashtanga Yoga Institute, in Mysore, India where he travels yearly to study philosophy and focus his yoga practice. He is originally from Pittsburgh, PA and counts cooking and the Pittsburgh Steelers among his favorite things.

In 2012, Matthew Ferrara and Rosie Herrera created the Spike Awards – an initiative seeking to illuminate and champion under-the-radar talent and encourage diversity within the contemporary American dance scene.

In his day job he works as a Financial Advisor at Northwestern Mutual, but we were able to catch up with him recently. Hear more from Matt in our interview with him below!

Miami Light Project: Hey Matt—On a Scale of 1 to 10, how much do you love MLP?
Matthew Ferrara: 10.8 out of 10!

MLP: and why?
MF: I go to MLP shows ‘blind’; I purposefully do not read the summary or blurb of the performance – I just go when they have a show and I am free that night. That little leap of faith has led to countless mind-expanding discoveries that, had I left it up to my preconception of what I ‘like’, would never have occurred. (Also, because ‘108’ is my favorite number.)

MLP: What are you currently obsessed with?
MF: the music of Mitski, merino wool, the Maillard reaction
(and, apparently, alliteration)

MLP: Approximately how many MLP Shows have you seen?
MF: (I see what you are doing here… I am 46 yrs old…)
Around 85-90, I would guess.

MLP: What’s a song that can always make you cry?
MF: Rihanna poorly auto-tuned

MLP: What’s the most interesting thing you have seen at MLP?
MF: Rehearsals

MLP: Most special MLP memory?
MF: Seeing Rosie Herrera’s production of “Dining Alone” at the Arsht black box; the Nu Deco Ensemble/ Global Cuba Fest collaboration; bearing witness to Teo Castellanos’ haberdashery.

MLP: What is the most interesting thing that you’ve learned recently?
MF: sound = touch at a distance

MLP: Why do you support MLP?
MF: doing nice things for people I care about makes me feel good.

MLP: What is a simple pleasure you couldn’t live without?
MF: Fried artichoke hearts.

MLP: What’s your favorite discipline to see at the theater?
MF: like the classically flowy, dance-y stuff best.

MLP: Something you don’t do that you should do?
MF: Alternative milk

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Kristina Villaverde

Special Projects Manager

A native of Miami, Kristina Villaverde became Miami Light Project’s Technical Director in 2014. Kristina is also the director of Miami Light Project’s Technical Fellowship, a program designed to train emerging theater technicians and prepares them for professional work. A long time staple in the South Florida theater community, Kristina has worked as the Head Electrician at Byron Carlyle Theater, The Colony Theater and the Olympia Theater. Additionally, she has built her theater skills as Light Designer and Stage Manager for numerous productions, and worked for local arts organizations as Young Arts and Miami Lyric Opera. Kristina has been a member of I.A.T.S.E. Local 500 and had the opportunity to work as a stagehand for a variety of productions from Broadway, Comedy Central, CBS, Telemundo to Live Nation at a great number of venues in South Florida.
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Terrence Brunn

Marketing & Communications Manager

A native of St. Thomas, US Virgin Island, Terrence Brunn is an arts administrator and designer with a B.A. in Business Management from the University of Miami. Terrence Brunn joined MLP in 2012 as part of the Miami Light Project’s Technical Fellowship Program inaugural class where he explored all aspects of stagecraft. Now Terrence is the communications manager for Miami Light Project and the program coordinator for Miami Theater Center. Terrence currently resides in Miami and enjoys traveling when not working.
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Regina Moore

Director of Planning & Development

Regina Moore joined Miami Light Project in October 2012. Previously, Regina worked as an independent consultant and grant writer for nonprofits in South Florida. Since 2003, Regina has worked with cultural & arts and community services organizations on projects that have generated more than $4 million in grants. She has 18 years of experience in grant proposal development, strategic planning, building collaborations and program evaluation for small/mid-size nonprofits. Regina holds a master degree in business administration from the University of Miami (Coral Gables, FL) and bachelor’s degree in business from Pontificia Universidade Católica (Sao Paulo, Brazil). A native of Brazil, Regina currently resides in Boca Raton with her husband, John, and two children, Thomas and Emilie.
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Eventz Paul

Technical Director & Facilities Manager

Eventz Paul is currently the Technical Director and Productions Manager at Miami Light Project. He has been a part of this organization since 2011. He participated in Miami Light Project’s first class of the Technical Fellowship Program held at The Light Box. He joined this program hoping to improve his existing theater skills. He received training from experts in the industry that mentored and further his theater technical skills. Now, he has successfully used his professional knowledge and has had the opportunity to work with various arts organizations and venues throughout Miami including Miami Theater Center, National Young Arts Foundation, the Colony Theatre and many more. He has become an instructor and conducts audiovisual classes to incoming technical fellows.

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Elizabeth Boone

Artistic & Executive Director

Beth Boone has been the Artistic & Executive Director of Miami Light Project since 1998, developing critically acclaimed artistic programs that have asserted the organization as one of the leading cultural institutions in South Florida. These programs include: the establishment of Here & Now, South Florida’s most respected commission and presenting program for community-based artists; premiere presentations of internationally acclaimed; pioneering historic international cultural exchange with Cuba; and the creation of The Light Box at Goldman Warehouse, a multi-use performance and visual art space in Miami’s Wynwood Arts District. She previously served as Associate Director of Development for Florida Grand Opera, Deputy Director for the Department of Cultural Affairs at Miami Dade Community College, Wolfson Campus, co-founded an Off Broadway theater company (New York Rep), and served for six years as a Program Associate in the Arts & Culture Program of the AT&T Foundation. She received a B.A. in Fine Arts from the College of Charleston in South Carolina, and a MFA in Theater Arts from Brandeis University in Boston, MA.