Dear APAP Members and Colleagues,

First of all, we hope you are safe and well.

That is how we've started many a message to you during the COVID-19 crisis, but we must be completely honest. We know that many in our community are not safe and not well.

We are mourning the murders of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Tony McDade, and Breonna Taylor whose names add to the countless named and unnamed Black lives lost unlawfully, unethically, inhumanely. We mourn for each and every Black life cut short by the individual and institutional racism that plagues our communities and country.

It is through this deep grief that we have great clarity. We are united in calling for the end to the racist and sanctioned killing of Black people. We are committed to building organizations that are stronger because of the diverse voices leading them. We embrace each other and the healing that is possible through the performing arts.

On behalf of APAP's Board of Directors, staff and membership:

  • We stand in solidarity with Black artists, Black arts professionals and the Black communities we serve. We acknowledge the daily physical and emotional risks and burdens you bear and that you are often targeted for your Blackness.

  • We urge that arts organizations, arts workers and artists hold ourselves to a higher standard by examining our own practices as they pertain to racial equity, diversity and inclusion (REDI).

  • We honor Black people as a vital part of our collective American identity and as inextricable contributors to the American cultural fabric, and to whom we owe a great debt.

  • We believe in the sanctity of life, the promise of liberty, and the most fundamental and absolute right to personal safety regardless of race or gender. We believe in nonviolence and justice.

The music industry has called for TODAY, June 2, to be known as #BlackOutTuesday to catalyze change. We encourage you to dedicate today to having productive conversations about racial justice and equity and about what actions we need to collectively take. We understand that our work must be sustained and that action is more powerful than words alone.

We will hold ourselves accountable, and if we fall short, we will listen.

Mario Garcia Durham
President and CEO, APAP

Lisa Richards Toney
Incoming President and CEO, APAP

Karen A. Fischer, Board Chair
Pasifika Artists Network

Laura Colby, Vice Chair
Elsie Management

Jean Cook, Vice Chair

Gwethalyn Bronner, Secretary
James Lumber Center, College of Lake County

Jennifer Johnson, Treasurer
Arts Commons

Alicia Adams
Lulani Arquette
Native Arts and Cultures Foundation

Eddie Cota
Champion City

Jamie Grant
Ordway Center for the Performing Arts

Christopher Heacox
Jay and Susie Gogue Performing Arts Center, Auburn University

Kendra Whitlock Ingram
Marcus Performing Arts Center

Amy Lam
Celebrity Series of Boston

Beth Macmillan

Renae Williams Niles
Renae WN Consulting
Michael Reed
Arizona State University, Gammage

Daniel Bernard Roumain

Francine Sheffield
Sheffield Global Arts Management

Murielle Borst Tarrant
Cultural artist, director, playwright

Toby Tumarkin
IMG Artists

Cristina Vázquez
Cotenidos Artisticos