Being a Part of HTEP: My Experience
I can't help but fill up with joy when I check people in at Box Office and am face to face with newcomers to the theatre, as well as our beloved "regulars." When I hand patrons a colored button in exchange instead of a program, right there, you know this is not your average theatre show. Seeing faces of confusion, openness, and excitement is why we do theatre. To break molds that are placed for us, to tear down the fourth wall, and to do something bold and inventive, or as simple as achieve something completely different.
When we first started rehearsal, I remember being grouped with fellow cast members; we openly discussed questions about our own experiences around poverty. As we discussed, little things came up, such as living in a small house with a ton of people, working a minimum wage job to pay for school, or even relying on food stamps. I couldn't help but think about how my parents came to America from Romania, and how poverty has played a role in our lives, whether it be looking for employment or receiving government assistance. So many additional questions came up for me during and after this discussion...Why did my parents "protect" me from poverty as a child? How has my outlook on poverty changed from childhood to adulthood? Was I supposed to be aware of it? Is that even poverty? Did others know?....I can say my thought process changed on the subject, but I have also heard thoughts and biases change personally from fellow cast, crew, staff, and audience members alike.
The discussions during the show and afterwards is what is most important. What we decide what to take with us and/or what to leave at the door once our theatre opens and we step into the real world. Are we more aware of the five approaches that are discussed throughout in the show? I can tell you first-hand, even the Apprentices grabbed coffee one day and couldn't help but start debating which approach should win the overall vote. I think that truly is the whole point of the show. To not end this discussion, but to bring the conversation beyond the walls of the theatre, and then to do something about it.
Every night is a different night, and without you this show is literally impossible to do. You are the ones who make the discussions what they are, you are the ones who have pushed yourself to coming to a "non-traditional" show, and ultimately you are the ones who will decide what approach will receive the $1,000.
Which approach will YOU choose? Come spend with us.
Conceived and Written by Michael Rohd and Sojourn Theatre
Directed by Liam Kaas-Lentz
How To End Poverty In 90 Minutes (with 99 people you may or may not know)
Running through February 22
602 NE Prescott St, Portland, OR 97211
Box office: (503) 488-5822
All tickets: $40 (+$3 ticketing fee)
Rush Tickets: $20, cash only at the door, night of the show
Arts for All Tickets (EBT card): $5, cash only at the door, night of the show, up to two tickets
Each and every show, 25 tickets are given to local organizations and to individuals who are unable to afford tickets to the show. Email our Director of Community Partnerships, Elliot Leffler, for more information: firstname.lastname@example.org