Ramona: There's a lot of great work going on right now amongst various facets of the American Theater community, a desire to connect across boundaries, to go outside of what's familiar to learn from others how to grow, and expand their respective theater companies. There are a lot of conversations happening around these efforts, but yet there is still this devaluation of the impact and importance of theater and the arts in general society. What are same ways you think this opinion of the arts can change? What is the role of arts advocates in this situation? How can artists and arts activists work to influence change when it comes to arts policy?
The artist primarily fits into this as a service provider, bringing measurable acts of creativity into the classroom or other relative places so that children and youth, and society as a whole can benefit in a myriad of ways.
A small percentage of these students will choose to become artists. To do so will require a serious education and commitment to their art practice in order to make a real impact in their field and, in the case of First Responders, in their community.
First Responders have found unique ways to implement their practice, often in untested ways, and utilizing a process built for their chosen community. Many of these artists are also arts education service providers. And, often they also create work as individual artists or collaboratively with other professional artists. The challenge for these artists, and for all those arts-related professionals who work with and for them, is to articulate the value of this entire range of work produced by multiple generations of artists.
Our hope with FRT is to not only share our powerful practice and survival strategies, but to begin the process of articulating our value as artists, and collectively open up the dialogue between ourselves and advocates, policymakers, and stakeholders so we can all better tell our tale.