Why I think the Neanderthal Arts Festival is Important
Creating and producing an arts festival is a long journey.
Doing it once seems ambitious. Doing it more than once may be the very definition of insanity. But three times? #iknowyouknow (Hashtag for all of you who work / volunteer with festivals!)
So why make a summer theatre festival? What if no one comes? What if the performances are unwatchable? What if everything goes wrong AND we set the theatre on fire (again)? The whole endeavour is crammed full of what ifs.
Yet we are here - in the week of opening. It's Monday night and I'm terrified. On Thursday night performers will take the stage. Performers in plays that I helped choose in a festival I helped create. A tune plays in my head: "Cheese Whiz has... responsibility, responsibility..."
I want to go back to the day before I thought this was a good idea. I mean, it is a good idea but maybe for somebody else. Someone smarter, with more resources (and more Facebook friends). What if... what if... what if...
But it's my work. I think Neanderthal Arts Festival IS important. I want to have an event in the summer in the city of Vancouver that makes theatre fun. One that doesn't take itself too seriously but is willing to take chances.
And I want you to come and see the artists who are part of the festival. Artists who are creating new work or developing existing work to a new level or bringing their work to a new audience. And on this Monday night - mere days before facing an audience - I suspect many of them are terrified too.
That's what a festival like Neanderthal is about. Creating a stage where artists take risks to bring their audiences to new and different places. I invite you to join us for Neanderthal Arts Festival 2012. Come with us on our journey - we're waiting for you.