Given their deep community connections and variety of existing programs, People’s Light has the capacity and experience to test unique methods for entertaining the community where they are. They will roll out newly developed socially distanced programming, (which may include the Beards truck as a potential approach) providing new experiences to their community partners that are immediate and timely. If successful, these models of community-based delivery will allow them to be more responsive to current events and community needs and to honor the experiences of community members, especially Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC). Others will be able to learn from these experiments, as COVID-19 wears on and into the future.
This grant was made as part of Barra’s Reimagining Theater for Changing Times initiative for projects that reinvent how performing arts organizations can present work at a time when social distancing has caused many to cancel their 2020 seasons. These companies are considering how to not only safely present to audiences but are also being thoughtful about incorporating social justice issues into their programming and engaging diverse audiences. Selected projects stood out for their willingness to be daring, think creatively, work collaboratively and share their learning broadly about new models that can be used throughout the pandemic and beyond.