Anyone who follows theatre-related social media or subscribes to our website is likely to have seen my column on Monday, “6 Takeaways From the ‘Mikado’ Yellowface-Off.” My intention with the piece was to add my voice to the protest against yellowface and other harmful forms of cultural appropriation while also trying to address other complicated, nuanced issues that have come up since the NYGASP Mikado controversy began in mid-September. In venturing into this thorny territory, I made several mistakes: using language which I should have known was insensitive; employing a distant, musing tone, as if these are theoretical issues, not gnarly real-life problems that have caused and continue to cause real pain, silencing, and oppression; and needlessly muddying my larger point with comparisons that read as false equivalences. For these mistakes I sincerely apologize.
At Theatre Communications Group, we’ve been engaged in a longstanding initiative to promote equity, diversity, and inclusion in the theatre field, to build allies and partnerships with individuals and organizations who are leaders in this work, and to be part of difficult, essential conversations it would be much easier to sweep under the rug.
That mission dovetails with that of American Theatre, which is committed to the idea that good journalism is a service to the theatre field. That includes reported pieces, features, interviews, news, and editorial opinion pieces. We plan to do more, and do better, to include more voices in all areas of our coverage. I’m staunchly proud of the work of my staff and contributors in this ongoing publishing effort; obviously there is much work yet to do. I hope you’ll continue reading and engaging with us, not only on social media and in our comments sections but right here at our desks; my email is firstname.lastname@example.org, and the general American Theatre email is email@example.com. We do our job for you, and we can’t do it well without you.