JUMP TO: Healing & Reconciliation | Education & Training | Implementation 

Dismantling Oppression in the Theatre

Amid field-wide calls for racial justice, A.R.T./New York is integrating programming to help our membership to begin addressing deeply ingrained systems of white supremacy and racism in ways that are specific to the nonprofit theatrical community.

These programmatic offerings are intended to respond to some of the demands of We See You White American Theatre. The We See You demands both accelerated and provided additional framing for our work. We acknowledge the tremendous labor of our colleagues in gathering and disseminating these demands, and we thank them for it. As a predominantly white institution (PWI) that serves many other PWIs, A.R.T./New York is deeply implicated in the failures of our community that led to the writing of that letter, and we know that it is our responsibility to fulfill these demands and to support our members in doing the same. We also know that we must de-center ourselves in this work. In addition to connecting our community with consultants and organizations who have expertise in anti-racist practice, we will also offer our members the resources to work with whoever is best for them, regardless of whether or not they are already within our network.

White text on a black background. Full description below the image.
Image: A white and black box with text that reads Why This Framing? Non-Hierarchical. There is no predetermined order and no prerequisites to accessing our resources; members can enter any circle of learning at any time. Preventing Gatekeeping. We are not the holders of knowledge. We will connect our members with expert consultants and also provide them with resources to work with others outside of our list. Centering BIPOC Voices. We See You White American Theatre and others have already laid out a plan for what our field needs right now. We are simply following their lead.   

Recognizing that A.R.T./New York's membership is not a monolith, and that we serve individuals with a broad range of experience and knowledge, this ongoing programming contains multiple points of entry. We are envisioning these programs as three intersecting circles, each with a unique focus and yet overlapping with each other. We invite you to meet us wherever you are at the moment. 

 

A black and white graphic of the 3 Circles of Programming: Healing & Reconciliation, Education & Training, and Implementation.

Image: A white box with black icons of two people speaking under which reads Healing & Reconciliation, a laptop under which reads Education & Training, and a lightbulb under which reads Implementation.  

Healing & Reconciliation 

Processing is an essential component of this work, but there is not often space for it in more formalized education and implementation spaces. We are currently exploring the possibility of hosting facilitated affinity spaces focused on BIPOC healing, white learning, and community reconciliation. We would like to hear from our members about how affinity spaces might be most useful. Please take a moment to complete this short survey - we look forward to your input!

 Provide Input »

 

Education & Training

Our workshops will provide tools for addressing anti-racism through an informed approach. We know we are not equipped to provide education specific to every We See You WAT demand, but we are committed to partnering with BIPOC instructors who can address some key areas. Rather than launching a separate category or “track” of anti-racism workshops, we are incorporating anti-racism into our education programming across the board. This means that, while you will see some more traditional anti-racism training on our calendar, you will also see workshops on grant writing, budgeting, and all other aspects of organizational management that recognize anti-racism as a key value in those practices. 

Our aim as a service organization is to be involved in the dismantling of oppressive systems while we help our members in doing the same, so that we can collectively create safer workplaces and better art.  These workshops are part of a larger, ongoing conversation around equity and active anti-racism practices that will deepen & broaden over time. There will be ongoing educational opportunities as we lean into this collectively as a community.

Learn More About Workshops »

Side by side headshots of three Black women, under which reads BlackBee EntertainmentImage: Tavia Riveé Jefferson, Ann James, and Marisa Diane Kennedy of BlackBee Entertainment

FEATURED WORKSHOP SERIES: 21 Seeds of Change - An Introduction by BlackBee Entertainment. A.R.T./New York is thrilled to be partnering with BlackBee Entertainment to both spread awareness about their work and to support their efforts to expand the roster of qualified individuals who can help ensure the production of new stories in safe and equitable spaces from the ground up! Their five-week series will offer insight into the vital roles of Cultural Coordinator, Diversity Editor, and Intimacy Director.

Implementation

These programs focus on the strategic implementation of anti-racist practices within member organizations. We aim to empower our members to use the tools and knowledge gained through education to shift internal cultures and dismantle oppressive systems. The goal is to match strongly articulated values with support for actionable change.


Theatre Leadership Program  
A longtime A.R.T./New York service, the Theatre Leadership Program (TLP) provides support for A.R.T./New York's mid-sized theatre companies to help them seize opportunities and overcome challenges facing their organizations as they approach critical junctures in their development. We are pleased to have welcomed to our roster new consultants who specialize in anti-racism policy building, healing/reconciliation, and organizational culture and structure as seen through an anti-racist lens. 

Funds for Anti-Oppression Work 
Modeled after our Access Microgrants, we are thrilled to now invite applications from A.R.T./New York members who would like to hire qualified practitioners to lead or support anti-racism work in their organizations. Individuals may include consultants who specialize in building anti-oppressive organizational systems, facilitators for affinity or community healing spaces, anti-racism trainers, or professionals such as Cultural Coordinators, Intimacy Specialists or Diversity Editors and Gender Consultants. While this opportunity is similar to the services provided by TLP, we want to ensure that A.R.T./New York does not perpetuate the white supremacist practice of gatekeeping by restricting our members to only the consultants we have previously identified.