The College would like to begin this Cultural Safety update by acknowledging that the College has been complicit in upholding institutional racism in past educational and programming choices (such as Lend Me A Tenor, which calls for Blackface, and through insensitive casting choices, such as the casting of a White actor in a Black role in Avenue Q) and understand that these and other decisions made have contributed to harm.
The role of the Cultural Safety Working Group is to ensure the voices most affected by institutional racism are brought to the forefront moving forward (you can meet the members of the Cultural Safety Working Group, comprised of IBPoC alumni and Board members, here). The group had its inaugural meeting last week, facilitated by third party facilitator Parker Johnson, and began the process of prioritizing action items and determining the procedures and processes for making recommendations to College administration for implementation, on their own terms.
We understand how important it is for current and former students who experienced racism at the College to be heard. The College and the Cultural Safety Working Group are working to create a safe place where they can voice concerns, tell their stories, bring up past hurts, and seek accountability. As the Working Group makes determinations over the next few months on how they will report on the College’s progress, and finalizes ways they will engage with past and current students in a safe and considered manner, additional updates will follow.
While the process of engaging with the Working Group is considered and developed, anyone wishing to bring forward concerns may contact firstname.lastname@example.org to privately reach the Managing Artistic Director, who will listen, respond, and protect your privacy if desired.