Empower Artists Recap

Meaux Space bustled with laughter and excitement from theatre industry professionals during the 2021 Empower Artists Gala on November 8th. From signature cocktails to the floral aromas of the “Annie’s Joy” Candle, the ambience alone guaranteed you a memorable evening the second you stepped into the venue. Our first large in-person event, we were honored to share a room with theatre legends, seasoned professionals, and talented young artists!

The Empower Artists Gala is Off The Lane’s annual fundraising event for all of our programming, and we were so excited to entertain our donors and OTL community for the evening. The event would not have been possible without our lovely sponsors, Herb-n-PeachWe Are VolumeFlaweless, Mustard Lane, and Show Up Event Consulting

Mentee Performers

Two of our Mentees from MP5 shared their talents with us! Both of these artists are new to NYC as of this year and we know they have bright futures ahead of them.


Samantha performed an original song called “Begin Again,” which is also the title of her first EP, now on all music streaming services!


Rachel performed “Someday” from Artists In Residence, a quarantine project by Jenny Giering.

Ann Reinking Scholarship Winner

Marilu Henner & Vivianna DeSantiago.
Photo Credit: Jeremy Daniel

One of our favorite parts of the night was getting to announce the inaugural winner of the Ann Reinking Scholarship Program. Vivianna DeSantiago moved from Yuma, Arizona to NYC this very recently and is a talented dancer specializing in modern and jazz.

“It’s so surreal. I’m so inspired watching the mentees perform and then to watching Bianca perform was unreal– it was just amazing. I am so excited for this year and I can’t believe it’s me, you know?” — Vivianna

Steps On Broadway Partnership

To celebrate the Ann Reinking Scholarship, we’ve formed a partnership with Steps On Broadway. Joe Lanteri, Executive Director of Steps, attended the Gala and presented Vivianna with a special gift: up to 10 free classes a week for an entire year.

Watch Vivianna’s acceptance speech and Joe Lanteri’s partnership announcement below:

Video Highlight:

And last but not least…Bianca Marroquin and Brenda Braxton

Bianca Marroquin and Brenda Braxton closed out the night with a spirited performance of “Nowadays/Hot Honey Rag.” Click the play button to watch their iconic performance and the rest of the Empower Artists Gala below!

Photo Gallery

Thank you to everyone who attended!