A Note from the Artistic Director
First, I hope this finds you safe and well. In March, while riding high on the success of Hip to Hip’s first winter tour, I was about to announce the titles and dates for its fourteenth season of Free Shakespeare in the Parks. That now seems like a quaint dream from a bygone time as Hip to Hip reaches its fourth month of being “paused,” pursuant to the Executive Order of Governor Cuomo.
COVID-19 has had a devastating impact on everyone and everything. It has also laid bare the depth of economic and racial inequality in the United States. My heart goes out to all those who have faced hardship and loss during this time. Hip to Hip adds its voice to the call for an end to racial injustice and inequity and recommits to reflecting the diversity of New York City in all aspects of its operations.
NYC is currently easing into phase four of Governor Cuomo's regional reopening plan. Unfortunately, with the virus surging in other parts of the country, restrictions remain.
I explored many options to safely produce a scaled-down version of Hip to Hip’s season in case NYC opened before summer slipped away. I am sad to report that my producing window of opportunity has closed and Hip to Hip must cancel its summer tour of Free Shakespeare in the Parks.
The pandemic has been particularly hard on the performing arts. Though losing a theatre season may seem like a mere drop in the vast ocean of loss suffered these past months, I am nonetheless heartbroken that over forty artists will not be employed by Hip to Hip this summer.
I look forward to reporting back with news of Hip to Hip's post-pandemic plans. Until then, I will continue following the directives of government and public health officials and in the spirit of shared sacrifice I would encourage you to do the same.
Programming made possible in part with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, including discretionary funding allocated by New York City Council Majority Leader Jimmy Van Bramer and Queens Borough President Melinda Katz.
Funding also provided by The Davee Foundation, The Josephine Foundation, The Anna-Maria & Stephen Kellen Foundation, The Hyde & Watson Foundation, Atlantic Philanthropies, The LeFrak Organization and Goldman Sachs Gives.