One of my favorite things to do is watch an audience. While you watch the work we have created, I watch you —Because you are the final, critical part of this artform. Theatre is perhaps the most collaborative of any art that humans make, often reaching beyond the stage and asking for your active participation in real time to complete what we have made. And how you, as an audience, traverse the ups and downs of a piece of theatre is of infinite importance to me. Did you know studies have shown that when an audience takes in a piece of theatre their heartbeats synchronize? I marvel at this, how we at American Stage can provide a journey that allows for such a magical act of community.
Help us continue the journey with a gift to American Stage.
My journey with American Stage started a year ago, but for our community, the journey began in 1977. A passionate collective of artists and artisans shared a vision of bringing powerful stories to life for Tampa Bay.
In addition to our six vibrant mainstage productions, we now offer free community engagement programming, youth and adult theatre education classes, a children’s musical performed throughout Pinellas County public schools and the largest annual outdoor theatre event in the region. We are the longest running, most critically acclaimed professional theatre in Tampa Bay.
Yet beyond our accolades, what makes American Stage special is our mission to touch the hearts and minds of all who engage with us. We have fostered a home for curiosity, exploration and connection. We have created a learning environment for generations of theatre enthusiasts.
I recently talked to an audience member who, at the end of our current show, sat with her partner in the audience letting tears fall, not wanting to move. She said they were tears of joy and hope, because she felt so seen and understood by the journey on which we took her. She said that her experience during the show made her feel a part of something bigger than herself. She said she felt energized to pay forward this message of hope.
This is why we share stories. This is why art matters. And this is why your support is critical.
The journey at American Stage continues and we will stand resolute in sharing powerful stories. We will do it with music and dance, with witty repartee, electrifying dialogue, moments that make you hold your breath, and silliness that makes you giggle; we will pull those stories out of the swirling ether and bring them to you with heart. We will tell you stories of hope.
That is what you preserve when you support American Stage, and now more than ever is such an important time to give.
Please consider making a gift today – continue the journey with us.
Your partner in art,