Spotlight on Color Play: Meet Olivia Hernández and Marlena Milshteyn!

Two cities. Two arts centers. Two early childhood community partners. One show. Color Play.


Meet Olivia Hernández and Marlena Milshteyn, performers for Color Play, a performance for very young children at the Lawrence Arts Center and the Center of Creative Arts!

Olivia Hernández makes art with and about lots of things: computers, her dancing body, puppets, and just about anything in between. She’ll always be from sunny South Florida but really loves Lawrence in the fall. You may have seen her recently sweeping her magic arms around in DOT, or maybe you’re taking Chinese Classical Dance with her on Sundays. She has a very handsome cat named Jakamo, whom she is known to sing songs to in her kitchen. Her favorite color is red/black/white.

Marlena Milshteyn is a singer, actress, and complete music nerd. In her free time, you will find Marlena playing guitar or hanging from a tree in a hammock. She works with kids every day in the Webster Groves Statesmen Preschool as the music director and wishes she could see what goes on in her kids’ explosively creative minds! Marlena loves colors and loves color coding things even more. She is so super excited to be working on such a fun and unique show as Color Play!

So what is Color Play?

Welcome to our Theatre and Dance for the Very Young series!

In August of 2018, the Lawrence Arts Center partnered with the Center of Creative Arts (COCA) in St. Louis, MO and continued its Play Lab Series for 2-5-year-olds. In these research sessions, we collaborated with two early childhood centers to work with children in both cities using dance, music, and imaginative play. These sessions were recorded and served as research for our upcoming performance for children ages 2-5, Color Play. All of the ideas explored in Color Play will be performed by adults and based on our interactions in the Play Lab Series. We ask the questions: What does blue sound like? What does green do when it wakes up in the morning? How does orange dance? Very young audiences will enter an interactive world where colors can make noises, have wild dances, and create delightful surprises. The performance itself will involve live music, exploratory art, and moments of interaction with the audience. 

What do Olivia and Marlena do for Color Play?

Olivia and Marlena are both on the devising/performing teams in their respective cities. They work with the director and the other performers to develop moments and surprises inspired by the ideas of our very young artistic partners. Olivia is a pro at exploring moments of sneaky danger through her fantastic tiptoes, spying eyes, and curious attitude. Marlena is all about pillow fights and teaching her fellow actors the many, many ways you can travel without ever using your feet.


Dive deeper into Olivia’s world by checking out her artist website here. 

Get your tickets for Color Play in Lawrence here!

Get your tickets for Color Play in St. Louis here!