Justice is a fundamental human right. Without justice there is no foundation to society, to the law, or to our nation itself. Justice denied to any individual destroys justice for all, and to accept the injustice directed at Black Americans is unacceptable. We have watched in horror the murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and countless Black people, stretching back to 1619 in what is now America. With police targeting our Black communities, we stand with the thousands of protestors demanding justice for their deaths. We refuse to allow this persistent, racist violence against Black lives to continue. We acknowledge the trauma and the pain that Black Philadelphians, Black Americans, and Black theater artists experience because of prejudice and systemic racism. And we pledge to be a force to fight for your lives, for the justice you are so rightly owed, and the economic, educational, and social equality you have by right and by historical achievement.
We pledge that our theater company will be inspired by IDEAS: Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Access Strategies. We will recruit more members to our board of directors who represent the rich diversity of our city and co-create paths to leadership with them. We will collaborate with more Black artists and artists of color on our creative teams, on our stage, and in our corps of teaching artists. We will invest in their work and their careers. Our staff will grow to include more Black administrators and administrators of color; we will support their careers in the professional, nonprofit performing arts sector. We will increase our audience by offering more diverse artistic programming, and we will expand our partnerships with middle schools and high schools in the School District of Philadelphia with deeper educational programming and relationship-building. The mission of Lantern Theater Company is to produce plays that investigate and illuminate what is essential in the human spirit and the spirit of the times. We cannot fulfill our mission without the consistent and dedicated progress of IDEAS.
As part of our fight for racial justice, we support the Southern Poverty Law Center, Philadelphia's Juvenile Law Center, Black Lives Matter, and the Fund for the School District of Philadelphia, and we ask that you consider supporting these fierce and essential nonprofit organizations as well.
Header Photo: Paul L. Nolan, Sally Mercer, and Charles McMahon in Copenhagen (2018); Charlie DelMarcelle, Anthony Lawton, Jered McLenigan, and Brian Anthony Wilson in The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui (2019); Anthony Lawton and Paul L. Nolan in The Craftsman (2017); and Bi Jean Ngo and Peter DeLaurier in The Tempest (2018). Photos by Mark Garvin.