Well, it’s a personal question.
just 5 months before we began this business adventure.
That means that if there is any way we can make something happen for you, we will, because we are the decision-makers. End. Of. Story.
Well, maybe there is a little more story, because:
Leading up to their residency, we spent time on the phone kicking around ideas about the different options for programming, boosting enrollment, scheduling, and anything else that Margaret wondered about. “I appreciate that you always responded to emails and phone calls,” Margaret shared with us in her end-of-program survey, “and that you were always willing to schedule dedicated time for discussion. Organizing a program like this, no matter how small, brings a lot of questions!”
We totally get that -- and we want to make sure your questions all get answered! So like Margaret said, we’re totally willing to schedule time that’s just for you to ask your questions, and for us to brainstorm the best way to serve your community. It’s this adaptability that allows us to make theatre programming more accessible to organizations and individual students year by year.
Because we’re not trying to assembly-line our process, we have the ability to take our time and make sure that we are choosing just the right artist, just the right material, just the right image.
Every detail is important to us, so you won’t see us making any decisions lightly.
We work with some of the best artists in Chicago and around the country who are developing their own businesses in set design, musical composition, and costume construction. They are determined, they are tenacious, and they are dedicated to giving us (and, as a result, our families and program sponsors) the best work possible. Because they, too, are their own small businesses, all of the qualities that describe us also apply to them and to their work:
They’re flexible. They’re picky. And it’s personal.
Spunk is contagious.
And then we also look at those kids and think, man, remember when they were nine? Whoa, that was a zillion years ago.
We kind of look at our organization the same way. It was just seven years ago that Cassandra and I applied for legal help to officially file Compass Creative Dramatics with the State of Illinois. Just seven years ago that we opened a Compass Creative Dramatics checking account. Just seven years since we wrote our very first Compass Creative Dramatics play, Peas & Harmony: The Princess & The Pea (Remixed).
(It’s a good one.)
But it also feels like we’ve been doing this for a lifetime. The connections we’ve built, the relationships we’ve made . . . thinking back on those elements, this experience feels timeless.
This thing, we built it. And that means we’re personally invested in its success. We make personal sacrifices to ensure that our students are getting the education they deserve, and that our program sponsors are getting the support they need to help us make that happen. We’re not working for an organization; we’re not punching a clock. When we go to work each day, it’s because our students matter to us. Our program sponsors matter to us. Our mission and our work matter to us. We are personally inspired to better serve students across the country each and every day.
And each and every day, we are able to serve them better.
Because we are small.