Teresa’s Weekly Update: Creative Frontiers Edition

by Teresa Eyring

in Weekly Update

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I recently traveled to Anchorage to visit TCG’s three member theatres in Alaska: Perseverance Theatre in Juneau, Cyrano’s Theatre Company in Anchorage and “the world’s northernmost company,” Fairbanks Shakespeare Theatre (FST). Perseverance opened a production of The Blue Bear, Cyrano’s held an open house with a variety of speakers (including yours truly), and the FST staff were present to discuss their exciting project, Bard-a-thon 13, a weeklong live-streamed reading of Shakespeare’s Complete Works.

I also participated in a community meeting in which the concept of a statewide company of theatre artists was explored by Perseverance through a MetLife/TCG A-ha! Think It, Do It grant. In spite of the geographic challenges of such an idea (great distances, limited roads, etc.), the indomitable creative spirits of these theatre-makers were finding ways to make it work. I was also heartened to hear the successes of the Alaska Native Playwrights Project in Anchorage and the Last Frontier Theatre Conference Play Lab in Valdez. Clearly, Alaskan theatre artists are breaking new ground together on more than just the physical frontier.

A similarly collaborative spirit powers the re-launched TCG Brain Bank: Where Knowledge Earns Interest. One of TCG’s greatest assets is the community of brilliant minds represented by our membership, and the TCG Brain Bank empowers these minds to share their wealth of experience with one another. We are currently inviting executive leaders, senior level staff and trustees at TCG member theatres to register as Knowledge Donors. If you’re willing to share your time and expertise, please register (the process should take less than five minutes).

Nowhere is that collaborative spirit more necessary than in the ongoing challenges of arts advocacy. On February 13, President Obama released his FY13 federal budget proposal to Congress, and though the proposed budget nearly restores the FY12 cuts to the NEA, problematic legislation is proposed for Arts in Education programs and charitable giving incentives. It is essential that you take a moment now and click on the following links provided by the Performing Arts Alliance to ensure your members of Congress are reminded of the public value of federal support for the arts.

Acting together, we can make sure the creative frontiers of theatre continue moving forward.