In March 2020, Vineyard Theatre was forced to cancel the remainder of its 2019-2020 season, as well as its April 20 Gala, as a result of the global COVID-19 pandemic. The Vineyard has made a commitment to paying staff and artists' salaries during this closure, as well as health benefits -- a paramount concern for everybody at this time -- but as a nonprofit organization, the resources are finite.
With the support of our Board of Directors and community of artists, we are launching The Campaign for Right Now with the goal of raising $100,000 by May 15 -- a goal which will be matched dollar-for-dollar by our generous lead donors including The Ted Snowdon Foundation, new Board member Susan Marks, and additional anonymous donors.
As an added bonus, if (and only if!) we make that goal together, our friends Hunter Bell, Susan Blackwell, Heidi Blickenstaff, and Jeff Bowen from the cast of [title of show] will put on an online concert with a special roster of surprise guests for everybody who gives $25 or more.
A gift in any amount will ensure that The Vineyard emerges from this crisis ready to deliver the world-class, boundary-pushing theatre you have come to expect from our daring artists.
Thank you so much.
For more information about Vineyard Theatre and its programs, visit www.vineyardtheatre.org.
Tune into "The VT Show" on Tuesday at 5PM through Facebook or YouTube to hear from the hosts and creative team themselves. Vineyard Theatre Artistic Directors, Douglas Aibel and Sarah Stern, will be joined by Hunter Bell, Susan Blackwell, Heidi Blickenstaff, Jeff Bowen, Michael Berresse, Matt Vogel, and Larry Pressgrove. You will be able to ask questions to the entire team - live!
Right Now, The Vineyard is actively finding new ways to pursue our mission. All spring, Vineyard artists will be developing work for future seasons in virtual rehearsal rooms, legendary theatre-makers will appear in our weekly social media series "The VT Show" every Tuesday at 5pm, and students in the Vineyard Theatre Student Ensemble will meet twice weekly online to write and perform their own original work.
"Right Now" is also an apt description of the bold subject matter The Vineyard always strives to produce on its stage. In this season alone, we produced Tina Satter's IS THIS A ROOM and Lucas Hnath's DANA H. -- each unique in their telling about a complex real-life individual grappling with the forces which inform our current global landscape.
We recognize that Right Now is a serious time of need for all of society. We also recognize, though, that a society can never be truly healthy without the arts to provide hope, perspective, and communal understanding of the world around us. The arts are not ancillary; they are essential.
There is a future beyond Right Now when we will gather together and celebrate the singular, sustaining power of live theatre. We hope that future is near, but if we don't rally support today, the gathering will be gone tomorrow. We invite you to join us in contributing to this future today, and we look forward to seeing you -- happy, healthy, and stronger than ever -- very soon.
The Vineyard’s Artistic Development Programs are at the heart of our mission, providing ongoing, supported opportunities for emerging and established artists to create new work and take creative risks. Through readings, workshops, residences, and developmental Lab productions, we tailor our programs to best serve the needs of artists and their work and to guide projects at all stages of development. Many of the plays and musicals we help to develop go on to full production on our stage, including Tarell Alvin McCraney's WIG OUT!, Branden Jacobs-Jenkins's GLORIA, Ngozi Anyanwu's GOOD GRIEF, Paula Vogel's INDECENT, and many more.
During this time, The Vineyard is continuing artistic development activity, adapting to the current situation and providing artists with the digital resources and dramaturgical guidance they need to continue exploring the worlds of their plays and musicals in preparation for future productions. Later this spring, Vineyard Members will be able to experience our annual spring reading series via Zoom.
Vineyard Theatre's education programs serve over 750 high school students from every borough in New York City and seek to create a meaningful connection to the arts for students who may otherwise not have access, and to diversify future artists and audiences in our industry with underrepresented voices. All activities offer opportunities for deeper engagement, creating a path from first-time matinee attendees to stars of our youth festival, performing alongside professional artists and supported by professional theatre production and marketing resources.
For the past three seasons our education program has culminated with Developing Artists' REBEL VERSES Youth Arts Festival, which now has its permanent home at The Vineyard. During REBEL VERSES, the Vineyard Theatre Student Ensemble (VTSE) has performed with Developing Artists' youth artists and those from the best youth companies in New York City and beyond.
During this time, we are continuing work with the VTSE -- students meet online twice weekly to write and perform their own original work with Education Director David Laws and coached by Director and Susan Stroman Award-winner Whitney White. Students have provided feedback that the program has been a more important creative outlet than ever, as they navigate the challenges of remote learning for their high school classes for the first time. Later this spring, we will be virtually sharing the VTSE students' work with each of the public high school classrooms who would have attended our production of TUVALU OR, THE SADDEST SONG, with the hopes of inspiring more young artists to embrace their own voices.