If the pandemic has highlighted a universal truth, it is the value of the outdoors and our natural environment. So many of us have taken to exploring during this challenging time of isolation. Ever the constant, the natural world has provided us with opportunities to connect with nature, one another, and to see glimpses of our lives post-pandemic.
Protection of the natural world may not seem to be a central part of the mission of Team Sunshine, however essential to our role as art makers and as an ensemble is to manifest concerns that are deeply vested within our lead artists. As the father of a young daughter, I’ve been thinking a lot about the world which she will inherit and the severe damage caused to our planet by the impact of climate change.
Parenting and environmentalism are two branches of the same tree - stewardship. As I’ve watched my daughter grow, I recognize that our planet will be a very different place for her when she becomes my age. In reflecting upon that and thinking about my own experiences, we are in the beginning stages of devising a new work - YOUR OPTIMISM IS NOT REQUIRED - which centers on the relationship between a father and daughter at the intersection of climate justice, grief, and parenting.
Set to have its first premiere this September, OPTIMISM is a note of encouragement for those who are working or paying attention to the frontlines of the fight against climate change, an affirmation of past actions, and a reiteration of our collective need to stay motivated in the face of the most massive existential threat to our lives. For those who are passive observers of the crisis and activists in the face of burnout, it’s a call to harness the power of human connection, the natural world, and art in order to overcome the obstacle of despair.
Today, we are writing with the hope that you will join us in OPTIMISM. Our goal is to raise $5,000 towards the further development of this piece. In attention to addressing these important issues, OPTIMISM is also an investment in Team Sunshine’s operating model. As an intimate, outdoor experience with a cast of two or three, OPTIMISM is being developed as a touring project. We are currently in conversations with potential partners in Detroit and New Orleans and look forward to being able to share Team Sunshine with audiences outside of our home in Philadelphia.
Your gift of any size is an important first step in helping us meet our goal and create new opportunities for Team Sunshine to grow. Please consider making a donation here.
With great appreciation,
Dad and Lead Artist - YOUR OPTIMISM IS NOT REQUIRED