Telluride Theatre & The San Miguel Resource Center present
#MeToo: A Night of Performance, Downlow Stories & Connection
May 10 | 7pm (Doors at 6:30pm) | Ages 21+ only please
The Sheridan Opera House SHOW Bar (Bar will be open)
FREE & open to the public ($10 suggested donations, a hat will be passed)
Telluride Theatre & The San Miguel Resource Center present #MeToo, a night of performance, Downlow stories & connection. In the era of #MeToo, the two organizations are coming together to show that consent is not only sexy, but mandatory, and sexual assault is still a major issue. It will be a very special night of performance: part theatre, part poetry, part survivor stories.
The #MeToo movement was founded nearly a decade ago by social justice activist Tarana Burke. However, it really took hold in 2017 when high profile individuals, using their fame and celebrity, advanced the cause by breaking the silence and coming forward with stories about sexual assault and harassment, opening the gates for everyone to follow. The movement has created an important space within the broader community for survivors to share their stories, to be listened to, to be heard, and to be believed. Emerging from the shadows, sexual assault and sexual harassment now occupy every day conversations. The movement has broken down barriers, including the fear of not being believed, not feeling safe, not feeling validated by the legal situation, disruption of personal lives—and helps individuals not feel isolated in their experiences.
San Miguel Resource Center hosted a series of #MeToo Community Conversations open to all individuals to discuss the movement and explore what steps can be taken to bring this national movement to a local level to address sexual violence in our community. A major theme that emerged from the conversation was the idea of what next. Now that people have this awareness and recognize sexual violence as a problem, how do we navigate this era in which people fear interactions with each other for not wanting to perpetrate harassment and how do we create safer spaces for people of all identities?
Emily Osan, Prevention Educator for the San Miguel Resource Center recalls, "the idea for a #MeToo night of storytelling arose from one of these conversations when local community members suggested SMRC consider collaborating with Telluride Theatre's Downlow to present a night of stories to share the experiences of survivors from our community. In our meeting to plan the event, we all agreed that we wanted a night of not only hearing survivor stories, but also an opportunity to educate the community about consent, deepen their understanding of sexual violence, and challenge them to be a part of the change by coming together to shift the culture."
“When the San Miguel Resource Center contacted us about collaborating, we really wanted to create something that shines a light on sexual harassment and assault, but in a way that is entertaining, moving, palatable, educational and at sometimes even a little but funny. We are excited to bring this conversation to the stage as it is so important to continue to talk about consent, share stories and where to go from here,” states Sasha Sullivan, Telluride Theatre's Artistic Director.
Sasha worked with The Downlow's, (Telluride Theatre's storytelling event) creator Laura Idema Shaunette to plan the night, but as they worked it became clear that this was not going to be just a storytelling night. "We wanted to utilize different ways of telling these stories, since the subject matter is so intense we really looked for ways to make the night have something for everyone," says Sullivan. The SMRC has provided survivor accounts that Telluride Theatre will read, and supplemented by skits, poetry, stories and songs.
"Our goal with this event is to bring this important (and often heavy) material out in a way that is accessible to both understand and discuss as a community. There are so many brave women coming forward in this movement, many of whom are part of our small town. They don't owe anyone their stories, but have chosen to share for their own reasons, and have given us an opportunity to learn and grow from them. Though the subject matter is uncomfortable, it's important for us to support those who have gone through these experiences, as well as figure out how to help society do better now and moving forward," says Laura Idema Shaunette
This is a show for everyone, ages 21+. Please join the conversation and be a part of the movement.