We Will Be Back Soon But We Need Your Help
With fingers crossed the Firehall looks forward to re-opening in July with live performances for a limited number of audience members. The Firehall has been at the forefront of ensuring we have a comprehensive COVID safety plan in place for when audiences and artists meet again. Our staff and volunteers are receiving training in all aspects of keeping everyone safe. But as we move forward with plans for the summer and the 2021-2022 season, we are asking for your support to ensure the Firehall’s recovery from the impact the pandemic has had on the arts.
Exploring the pandemic’s lexicon:
PPEs: Before COVID, personal protection equipment may have had many different interpretations which we won’t explore in this message but since March 2020 everyone has become pretty familiar with the acronym. Help us say a big thank you to the front-line workers in health care, in safety services and in grocery stores and in particular to those who have been working in the Downtown Eastside to reduce the impact of COVID and the DRUG pandemic. All funds raised through the PPE ticket donation program will go towards providing free tickets to those who have worked diligently to keep us safe. A donation of $100 will support four complimentary tickets for five front-line workers.
ZOOM: Since the pandemic we don’t have meetings or conversations – we “jump” on Zoom to connect visually and hope everyone’s camera is focused above their waistlines and if their children interrupt or they want to introduce us to their cat, dog or hamster that we have the patience to be kind. At the Firehall as we tried to bring more and more of our activities online, we discovered our antiquated systems were sadly lacking and although some upgrades were undertaken there is still more to be done. Help us upgrade into the new world of digital connection with a donation of whatever amount works with your budget.
PIVOT: Pivoting became about changing your lifestyle from day to day to ensure everything you did was essential and if you had doubts, you pivoted to stay at home. A donation of $150 will help support 1.5 minutes of choreographic creation in which a dance artist could show you a truly physical pivot.
STREAM/STREAMING: A stream is no longer a place where you go for a cool dip and streaming is not about weeping profusely as you laugh at something said on stage or have an allergic reaction to the amazing plethora of flowering trees that helped us all stay hopeful during the Circuit Breaker. A donation of $200 will help us record and stream some of our live performances next season for those who may not be able to come to a live theatre performance for various reasons.
ESSENTIAL/NON-ESSENTIAL: An essential service became just about everything except for attendance at live performances while non-essential services were never quite clear to many of us. Essential: Actors, dancers, playwrights, choreographers, musicians, designers, creative workers are all essential. We need them in our lives to encourage us to dream, to feel, to learn, to cry and to laugh. Non-essential: Nothing is non-essential in the arts. We always have places where funds are required – whether it is purchasing toilet paper (apparently essential given the toilet paper shortages during the early days of the lockdown) or supporting the maintenance and operations of the Firehall. A donation of $300 will help us with all of those things.
DIALING IT UP like on a dimmer switch became a way to talk about the restrictions but we were never certain if that meant adding more restrictions or the other way around. In the theatre, bringing up the dimmer means increasing the intensity of the stage lighting so maybe that was really about the light at the end of the tunnel becoming brighter. For a donation of $500 you can support the costs of one actor’s costume so they can wow you with they’re intensity.
CIRCUIT BREAKER: A circuit breaker is no longer the way you find out if you have overloaded electrical circuits (like what happens at the Firehall when we plug the micro-wave in when the coffee machine is running) but a way to stop the spread of the virus and its variants. Help us celebrate keeping the circuit breakers open after so many dark nights of empty stages and only the Firehall Ghosts performing by making a donation of $1000.
STAY-CATION: Stay-cations became inventive ways to keep your family entertained or to get outdoors and to escape watching another show on Netflix. Everyone searched for new places to go and new things to do in our neighborhoods. We took on DIY projects, read a lot of books, planted gardens, and then checked out a few glasses of wine or tasted the herbs growing in the window box. If you are still looking for a great stay-cation for donations of $10000, we will plan a theme-party for you in your ten person bubble. Feel like a night in Mexico – let us transform the courtyard and bring on the tequila. Suggest a location or theme of your choice and we will get on to planning an event to remember.
Ah, the language of the pandemic. We hope you had some fun reading this and are encouraged to make whatever donation amount you choose. We know you are missing coming to live performances and we sure know we miss doing them for you. Thanks for your wonderful support – stay safe and we will see you soon.