Feature Aug 27, 2014 at 12:00 pm

Diversity in Portland Theater, Onstage and Off


This is a thorough article, and I appreciate the clarity you bring to the subject. Here are a few further thoughts: Although adults Portland is unusually "white" for a city of its size, as the reference to our public schools suggests, Portland under the age of 18, or even 25, is more diverse (especially if you can white immigrant groups like Russians and Ukrainians). And if you look at the larger metro area -- taking in parts of east county to which households of color and/or poor households have been pushed in the past decade -- once again there is more diversity. So two thing the Portland arts community needs to do to thrive are 1) creating programming that introduces students and other young Portlanders to theater, which frankly can seem expensive, elitist, or outright boring -- if they know about it at all. 2) stage works *and* do outreach in spaces where the population is more diverse; the point isn't to get "those people" to come to Theater, it is to create theater that serves the whole population.

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