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Equity Initiative

It is our mission to provide rigorous actor training that engages the heart of the artist, while cultivating a spirit of lifelong investment in the arts.

We create story tellers in an ensemble environment. TAC exists to bring together people, ideas, and resources to create artists who can empathetically and authentically walk in the shoes of another. Therefore, diversity and equity are core to the TAC mission. We aspire to develop, promote, and sustain an organizational culture and reputation in the communities that we serve as a high performing organization that values, nurtures, and leverages diversity and inclusiveness in all that we do.

The Actors Conservatory is committed to ensuring the diversity of its board, staff, faculty, student body and season of plays. We define diversity in terms of race, gender, religion, culture, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, physical abilities, and socio-economics. We believe that art should be available to all. We implement our diversity beliefs by recruiting students from across our nation who respect and represent different experiences and cultures and are willing to work to create a culture in which diverse people feel supported, recognized, and rewarded in making their best contributions through the mission of our organization.

Equity Goals

 

Two Year Conservatory Program

To serve the student, with an artistic heart, who thinks that a life in the theatre and film is beyond his/her economic reach, TAC will annually hold auditions and workshops in 5 of our nation’s most economically deprived cities*.  In 2017-2020 we will be going holding auditions for our two year accredited program in: Flint Michigan, Cincinnati Ohio, Las Vegas and, Memphis Tennessee and Buffalo New York.

We desire to diversify the stories we tell on stage to reflect the experiences of our students culture and back ground. (Currently our student body is 40% people of color,10% American Indian  and 1 student is legally blind)  In 2017 we will be producing In the Blood by the only African American woman to ever win the Pulitzer Prize, Suzan- Lori Parks. It is our goal to commission playwrights and directors of color to help bring these stories to life for our students. This year, award winning African American actor/Director, Victor Mack will be directing In the Blood. For the 2017/18 school year it is our goal to have a 50.

To expand our outreach and recruitment of American Indians. TAC currently has 2 American Indians (Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma and Confederated Tribes of Coos, Lower Umpqua & Siuslaw) enrolled in our first year program.  In 2018 we would like to visit American Indian Tribes in Michigan, Ohio, Oregon and Tennessee to listen to stories of our ancestors, explore theatrical traditions and conduct acting workshops.

Due to the rental price increases in Portland, Oregon it is becoming increasingly more difficult for students from out of state to find affordable housing while training at TAC. Federal Financial Aid, scholarships and grants only cover their tuition. Conservatory style training (unlike Universities) is a full time (9-5, M-F) discipline which limits the student’s job opportunities, as well. We would like to offer housing stipends and scholarships to our students to help ease the financial burden and emotional stress and consequently make Portland a more financially feasible place to peruse their actor training.

 

Faculty

To better serve our students we need to provide more equity in the color of our faculty and board to more clearly mirror the faces and cultures of our student body. In conjunction with The Red Door Project and Theatre Diaspora we will hold workshops for actors and directors of color who have a desire to mentor and teach. We would also like to interview and observe teachers of color in the cities and tribes where we recruit and teach. Currently only 10% of our faculty are people of color. We desire to expand that to 50% in the next five years. We would like to engage Kevin Jones and the Red Door Project to work directly with the faculty to explore meaningful and productive  communication skills when mentoring students of color.

 

Board

To provide more equity of leadership by diversifying our board to better represent the TAC culture of inclusiveness. Our administration will focus on community engagement and cultural exchange that reflects the goals and mission of our organization. We, again will be working with the Red Door Project and Theatre Diaspora.

 

 

Administration

While our current administration is ethnically diverse we will need to hire an administrative assistant to give support for all the administrative demands of our equity initiative.