To Our Audiences,
It seems like the last time we spoke was years ago, and as much as we’ve tried to stay connected during this time, we’re finding there’s no ideal substitute for gathering together to experience theater as a community. As difficult as that is, I’ve been so heartened to see the outpouring of support for Epic and other arts organizations in the area. Whether it’s the artists finding new ways to showcase their work online, or the late-night conversations I’ve had with other Artistic Directors about how we’re going to find our way through this new landscape, the faith that I talked about in my last message to you is still going strong. The key is going to be a willingness to adapt.
With that in mind, we have some new announcements to make.
As we’ve talked about our current programming slate, it became evident that we needed to decide which of our upcoming productions could thrive in a digital form–thrive, not just exist. The team here at Epic decided that two of the shows we were scheduled to present–The Laramie Project and I Can Speak–would not be well-served by making the move to digital. We intend to produce both titles in the future when we can do so in front of an audience. I would like to personally thank the production teams and the casts of both shows for being so understanding as we’ve tried to navigate the past month and a half. I look forward to working with each and every one of them when the time is right.
Now that you’ve heard what we can’t do, I’m very excited to tell you about what we can do.
We are currently prepping to produce the first-ever, all-digital summer season, comprised of two productions that are being tailored to fit an online platform. Both were previously announced, but are now going to be reformatted to make their digital debuts.
One of the gems in our #StaySafe Series is “Fill in the Blanck.” Rhode Island’s most popular game show has provided some sorely needed laughter to thousands of viewers, and I am very happy to announce that the creator of the show, Aaron Blanck, is taking his July production into the technological stratosphere. “Aaron Blanck Discovers America!” will be making its World Premiere on phones, laptops, and if someone can teach us how to hook up our computers to our televisions, maybe even on there.
Following that will be a production we had postponed back when we thought we’d be spending at least part of the summer inside. I’m excited to announce that the World Premiere of “Mayor Pete” is back on and on your screens this August. It’ll be directed by Caitlin Howle, and in addition to being the playwright, I will be portraying the world’s most famous Mayor. The play explores politics and personality in a way that was always going to benefit from the intimacy of a small theater, and now we’re able to down down on that in a way that I think will benefit it immensely.
As I’ve said before, these are the decisions we can make right now. If things change, we always have the option to move productions or performances back into a theater, but we’d rather aim for what’s probable then hope for what’s possible.
In addition to these two productions, we have already built up an impressive line of programming across multiple platforms that has secured us the biggest social media following in the company’s history, and we have no intention of slowing down now. Just wait until you see what surprises we have planned over the next few months, and be sure to follow us everywhere but on Twitter, which is, as you know, a hellscape.
We miss our audiences and we miss each other, but we’re grateful that we’re able to find opportunities to stay creative while we stay safe.
We’ve been on this Epic ride for almost nine years, and we thank you for sticking with us even when things get bumpy.
In that spirit–