At Kinship, we have had the honor and the excitement of changing the landscape of theater in Denver for the last eight years. When we set out in 2015, our goals were simple: 1) Make theater more accessible 2) Create something new with Kindness at its center.
We are proud to say that we have accomplished those original goals and more! As we move into this next phase of Kinship, we think it's important to reflect on what we accomplished as a community, and treasure the moments that define our legacy.
We made theater a safe and exciting place for theater artists.
We pioneered a rehearsal and performance process based on consent, safety, respect, and inclusion.
And then we walked the walk--when issues arose, we took quick and effective action to maintain a culture of respect and safety. No predatory or abusive behavior was tolerated. Ever.
We contributed to the Rocky Mountain Safety Alliance's Community Theatre Standards using our processes and experience.
We accommodated all individual performer needs and worked to make all of our rehearsal schedules flexible so our collaborators didn't have to choose between their art and their regular life.
Kindness was always at
Not only did we prioritize an atmpsphere of kindess in our work, but we centered kindness in everything we did.
With our Acts of Kindness program, we were able to change real lives in our community. We raised money for the LGBTQ community, the ACLU, and mass shooting survivors. We spent hours volunteering together at charity runs, food banks, and arts festivals. We collected and donated more than 400 books to local adults and children. We performed over 50 hours of improv in our nonstop marathons, and raised more than $7,000 for sexual assault survivors doing it. We fulfilled wish list requests for children in need during the holidays. We marched together for change. We put our hands in the soil and helped plant the Aurora Memorial Garden.
To the artists and collaborators who made all of that possible: you are the light this world needs. Thank you.
We battled exploitation in the arts.
We refused to work with venues that exploited our artists' efforts for their own profit.
We paid our artists equally for their work, never profiting unfairly off of their labor or paying in "exposure."
We respected our artists' time, never calling them for unnecessary rehearsals or demanding overwhelming time commitments.
We had strict policies about interpersonal relationships within our company, ensuring no one ever felt taken advantage of when it came to intimate affairs.
We worked to better our theater community as a whole.
We sought to create a more interconnected and supportive theater community in Colorado, believing thoroughly that a rising tide lifts all boats.
We provided coaching sessions and taught yearly workshops at the Colorado Thespian Convention to support the next generation of theater artists.
We sat on panels with the Colorado Theater Guild to offer insight and solutions for issues that we as a community face.
We attended countless productions to support other companies and artists.
We contributed to conversations about much-needed social change within both the theater and improv communities in Colorado.
We made theater more accessible.
We tried new things.
We never settled for how things have "always" been done.
We tried several different pricing, staffing, and ticketing models. Some things worked, like our Pay How You Can model, and some things didn't, like our $0 productions. But every experiment brought us closer to who and what we wanted to be!
We pioneered using e-programs to facilitate the use of reading technology and help the environment.
We made our rehearsal processes more accessible for our artists by offering flexible schedules, honoring individual needs, and using accessible spaces.
We ensured that every production was affordable, and never turned anyone away from a production due to an inability to pay. With our unique Pay How You Can system, we made sure that everyone felt welcome at our shows.
We had fun.
Group bondings at the Renaissance Fair, outings to shows, Scavenger Hunts, cast potlucks, game nights, lots of laughter...time spent at Kinship was always a blast!
We created truly stunning and revolutionary work.
We are proud to say that the work we made was without equal. We found our voice giving voice to others, with our original work intriguing, entertaining, and challenging audiences with every performance.
From Unpresidented to You Know Me, we offered essential works performed by truly remarkable artists. Rave reviews, sold-out shows, and life-changing moments on stage marked these last eight years, and we will forever be in awe of what our community achieved together.
Thank you will never be enough.