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LETTERS / Ensemble Stage Looks to Their 2020 Season With a Message of Hope

Dear Editor,

First let’s talk about that great big elephant in the room. Actually, I’ll start by not referring to it as an elephant. Elephants are awesome and one of the world’s most intelligent and majestic creatures. Therefore, I won’t disparage them by creating any association between them and what we all are now facing.

However, something I want everyone to keep in mind, there is nothing stronger than the human spirit, there is nothing stronger than our will to persevere, and there is nothing stronger than the insanely creative power of our imagination. Even Einstein realized that when he said, “Imagination is more important than knowledge.” Everything man-made, that is now, and ever will be, would not have come to fruition if not first being imagined. I mention the first two things because I think every once in a while we all need to be reminded of how amazing we are as a species. I mention the third because, other than the arts, the field of science is the most prolific user of imagination. With imagination comes creativity. With creativity comes discovery. With discovery comes hope.

None of you reading this may see the light at the end of the tunnel right now, but rest assured, there is at least one incredibly smart, incredibly diligent, and incredibly imaginative person wearing a lab coat and looking into a beaker or petri dish, who right at this very moment has a glint in their eye and a smile on their lips, thinking, “this is going to work.” Trust in them, and trust the fact we will get through this.

Now, regarding Ensemble Stage and our upcoming 2020 season, because of our schedule we have not had to cancel anything as of yet. However, since the cast for our first show of the summer season is scheduled to arrive mid-May, that show is right on the cusp of needing a decision made fairly soon. As for the rest of our 2020 season (four main stage shows, our Summer Saturday Kids Theatre production, two benefit cabaret concerts, a staged radio play, kids summer theatre camp, and our annual holiday musical variety show) , we currently plan to move forward as normal. We are working on completing the casting and hiring designers for our shows and continue to be very excited about our first ever world premiere.

Season tickets for our professional summer season are still on sale. If for any reason we should have to cancel our first summer production or any others because of the current health crisis we will offer the option of prorated season tickets. For those of you who have already purchased season tickets, or do so prior to any schedule changes being made, we will happily exchange any tickets purchased to a performance that ends up being canceled for a future performance, or we will give you a refund (minus any credit card fees).

However, as many of you know, we are a not-for-profit organization and our ticket sales subsidize roughly half our operating costs. We hope that you will consider donating any unused ticket purchases to the theatre.

I can’t stress enough that this current health crisis not only fosters great concerns for all our personal well-beings but it has caused Ensemble Stage, as well as many other arts organizations, a significant amount of financial stress. If you can find the resources to do so, please consider making a donation to Ensemble Stage at this extremely delicate time.

Regardless, please know that you are precious to us.

Ensemble Stage is your theatre and you are a valued part of the Ensemble Stage family. Stay safe, stay healthy, stay hopeful.

Gary Smith

Ensemble Stage