For 29 days we have reminisced, thanked and celebrated the people and organizations whose support, talent and hard work have made Seven Devils possible. So today, on the final day of our Gratitude Campaign, we're turning the bright, hot spotlight of gratitude on the transformative power of Theater.
In this year, when we've had very few chances to gather in person at all, much less go to the theater, we feel the absence of its power to connect us to ourselves, and to each other, all too keenly.
Theater expands our horizons. It makes us laugh; it makes us cry; sometimes it makes us gasp-- all at once --as if we shared a single breath, a single heart, a single hope. And in that moment we do. How else to explain the theater's magical ability to transport us through time and space simply by lowering the lights and then, with minds and hearts open, raising them again on a new, never-before-realized world created by and for the journey we've agreed to take together.
This year, we are also reminded of and grateful for the adaptability of theater: filmed Broadway productions, live events streaming from all over, rehearsed readings, High School students sharing their work on-line. As history has taught us, you simply can't kill Theater. Other plagues have tried, but none have succeeded. As long as we have stories to share, and we'll always have stories to share, the Theater will be there.
So, until we meet again in the theater, where we can turn off the house lights and bring up the lights on stage we at Seven Devils will continue to be grateful for the power of theater!
It only seems fitting that, as we round the corner and head into the final stretch of our 30 Days of Gratitude Campaign, we spend a day honoring, celebrating and lifting up ALL the amazing donors who have lifted us up for so long. We very, truly and quite literally, couldn't do with this work without you.
One of the greatest gifts we offer playwrights is the opportunity to focus on their work away from the pressures and expectations of a full production. We do this in many ways, including offering work for free; this allows all of us to focus fully on the playwright's work, without worrying about box office receipts. As Jeni often says to playwrights, "there should be no one in the room who has a larger stake in the work than you do." We are able to keep this promise to playwrights, thanks to so many amazing donors who bit by bit, donation by donation, have provided the funding, resources, talent and material support that has enabled us - together - to send a powerful message to the more than 200 playwrights whose work we've been honored to support and develop over the past twenty years: you, your work, your vision matters.
AND, we see the real world impact of our donors in the lives of plays and playwrights. More than 60% of the full length plays developed at Seven Devils have gone on to full productions around the country and around the world. In fact, whether you meet one of our playwright's work at a small community theater, a large regional house or even on Broadway, you too have been impacted by the collective generosity of our amazing donors.
If you happen to be one of our donors, then I invite you to take a moment (or several!) to really reflect on the impact of your gift and many ways in which the ripples of that gift travel into the world, on to stages out to audiences. It is not hyperbole to say that we couldn't do it without our donors - and that's why we've save this very special spot on our countdown list for AMAZING DONORS!
JUST A FEW OF THE MANY PLAYS SEVEN DEVILS DONORS HAVE SUPPORTED!
Our 30 Days of Gratitude Campaign is almost over...
Remember, when we say that no donation is too small, we mean it.
The bulk of our donations are between $10 and $50.
We are truly grateful for this large, generous group of donors.
A few years ago, we started a new level of donor supporters we call Devils Advocates. These generous individuals spread their donations throughout the year -- giving a regular, monthly donation as small as $5 or as large as $100 -- and these regular donations are a huge part of making sure we can do everything we need to do to support playwrights and to meet their needs as they develop brave new plays for our world today.
Our crew of Devils Advocates give us the financial stability to plan for the future of Seven Devils, year after year! By signing up today, you, too, can be part of the process, and part of our future. You'll help us make it possible to help even more playwrights -- giving them the time, the resources and the support to work on new plays on their terms, with the process that works best for them. And, of course, you'll have our heart-felt thanks!
Today we're giving a huge shout out to our fabulous funders!
Yes, this is an individual giving campaign, but these family foundations, nonprofit funders, charitable trusts and local, state and national government grantors, make up a critical part of our funding pie. While it's true that most of our funding comes from individual donations (see pie chart here), the support of foundations like these offers important stability to a small organization like ours. It also means we can plan more effectively (fiscally and programmatically) and, let's face it, knowing impressive organizations, like the ones below, have checked us out and decided we're a good investment sends a message to anyone else who may be wondering if they want to make an investment too. Thanks you, Funders!
Several years ago, the Board of Seven Devils decided to reach out to the business community of McCall to deepen our roots in the community. We're pleased to say that these businesses (listed below) stepped up to be sponsors -- either for the conference as a whole, to sponsor a particular conference play, or to sponsor one of our artists. This Sponsorship Program helps with both travel costs and stipends -- a crucial part of providing this opportunity for artists.
We are grateful to these businesses, and not just for their financial support. Over the years our connections to this community has deepened -- and their commitment to us is tangible evidence that what Seven Devils does in McCall is as valued by the community as it is by the artists.
So, today, the applause is to these businesses that have supported us over the years - including some that supported us this year even when the Conference was virtual! Thank you, thank you, thank you!
One of the tenets of the conference is that the house is always open. Rehearsals and readings are always open to the public (and are totally free!). And -- folks show up! As the pictures above show, our devoted audiences will show up if we're in a theater, a field, a cafe, a gymnasium -- or even, this summer, online!
We simply can't say enough about how grateful we are that they join us through the process of a play. And, as Jeni says, the audience is in fact part of the process, that when they show up, they work for us -- and that work, that presence, that attention... it matters.
By donating today, you become part of this community, part of our expanding audience of supporters all across the country. Because of you, we're able to bring you more stories that speak to all of us, stories that matter, stories that stick with us. Thank you!
Let's be honest: there are some people for whom saying THANK YOU just doesn't seem enough. People who are there whenever you ask -- sometimes BEFORE you ask. We've been truly blessed with volunteers like this.
We love our conference swag, and just wish we had a photo of Laura's lovely face so the next time you see her, you can thank her too!
And of course, we must celebrate our gratitude for The Friends of the Devils. This self started group of McCall volunteers, organized by Amy Rush, has hosted numerous benefits for Seven Devils in McCall, raising thousands of dollars and serving as year round community ambassadors for the Conference. And now, there's even a Boise branch of Friends of the Devils volunteers, including playwrights Jenny Sternling and Dayna Smith. They organized the Boise benefit featuring Steve Eaton (mentioned above) in the Riverside Hotel's Sapphire Room.
We are blessed to have friends like these, and so many more! The list of people who have gone above and beyond is so overwhelming that we could be working on this post for days and still not manage to thank all the amazing people who have come together in friendship and fellowship to make Seven Devils what it is today.
For the past several years, the Seven Devils New Play Foundry Board has given a special award of recognition to one of our supporters and partners who have made it possible to do what we do. No -- more than that, someone who makes our work joyous, and rich, and who brings something special to us.
This post is just for them -- because they've given a great deal to us, and we want to take a moment to acknowledge this huge gift.
2018 - The Board of the Alpine Playhouse
We were thrilled to honor the Board of the Alpine Playhouse with our 2018 Guardian Angel Award. The Alpine Playhouse has been home to the Seven Devils Playwrights Conference for 20 years. And even before Seven Devils, in the 1990s, it was home to our work as id Theatre.
But the Alpine is more than just a space we inhabit when we're in McCall. When the Board of the Alpine Playhouse decided, way back in 2000, to donate their theater space to us for the Conference, they did it not as a gift to us, but rather as a gift to the Community of McCall. The Alpine's generosity is truly what makes it possible for us to offer all our work free of charge. Our relationship with the Alpine is the foundation of our relationship to the community of McCall. One of the most amazing things about this relationship is the mutual respect, admiration and gratitude we have for each other. And we each seem to think we got the greatest gift of all: each other.
2019 - Sarah Jessup
2020 - Simon Brooking
Thanks to ALL our Guardian Angels!
Another day of gratitude for our playwrights shouldn't be that surprising (we are a playwrights conference, after all!) -- and this fundraising campaign is about making opportunities for playwrights, for giving the time and the resources to work on brave new work. Throughout the campaign, we've received truly wonderful posts of gratitude from past playwrights -- and we're giving over our blog today to them.
Perhaps their grateful words will inspire you to give a small amount, to make sure we can make the opportunities available to future playwrights in 2021 and beyond!
SUPPORT SEVEN DEVILS TODAY!
Seven Devils Playwrights Conference Family and Friends