I got this message from Chip Walton, Producing Artistic Director and Katie Maltais, Director of Patron & Audience Development at the Curious Theatre in Denver. I think it's well worth sharing.
It's poignant, respectful, and a message I very much needed to hear.
If your theatre company hasn't thought about messaging your supporters, this might get you thinking about it. The cast of Hamilton sent a message. Curious Theatre has sent a message. It's time we all send a message.
Dear Curious Family,
Many of you are searching. Many of you are uncertain. Many of you are scared. Let us tell you this now, unequivocally – Curious stands with you. We both personally stand with you. While we are both still processing our emotions and fears personally, we do know we are called into action and feel strongly that Curious has a voice in our community and we must use it.
Our motto is "no guts. no story." Now is the time to live that mandate to its fullest impact. We believe that as artists, if we're not doing something about the problem, right now - well, then we're only another part of the problem. History has taught us that real and meaningful change always comes from the ground up - from the culture of a country, from the power of community, and from the voices of the people. Our power is to tell stories - stories that have the transformative power of change. And now is the time to have the guts to tell those stories in new and courageous ways.
Curious stands for equality. We stand for respect. We always have and we won’t stop now. Our stage, our audience, our offices, and our people are all safe places for diverse backgrounds, ideas, stories, and perspectives to flourish. We believe that by putting diverse storytelling styles on our stage, we encourage empathy for those that are unlike ourselves - something that is desperately needed in the world today.
Now is not the time for violence or aggression, but it is also not the time for despair, blind acceptance, or apology. It is the time for action, advocacy, and strength. We ask you, our family, to join us in supporting all those who feel scared, unsafe, worried, or marginalized. Make yourself a safe space. Demand the best from all those around you.
Individually, we have been asking ourselves: What am I going to do? How can I help others, protect others, advocate for others? How can I struggle fiercely but with honor for my beliefs and my country?
Together, we have found answers in Curious as not just our cultural home, but as our community and as a family that forges together under a common goal of understanding our world and igniting change within it. We have the opportunity to promote inclusion, to advocate for social justice, to encourage empathy, and to exercise our curiosity. In planning for next season - our 20th Anniversary - we've been searching for what it is that we want to say. That crystalized last week. We are leaning in - asking questions and pushing conversations with clarity and courage, to drive social change and reclaim our American ideals.
Let's shape our world together, not watch as we feel it slipping away.
Chip & Katie
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