I don’t know if I know a single artist who doesn’t believe, deep-down, that that the work we do has the potential to transform lives. The way we usually interpret that platitude, though, is that we expect our work to transform the lives of the people who engage with it. But we sometimes forget how WE ourselves are transformed by making art. Wrestling with creating something mammoth and important and real, with expressing our vision for the world, requires us to become different, to become new, to give ourselves over to something undiscovered and unpredictable. And we become, I believe, better people for having made art.
Shouldn’t everyone have that experience? Perhaps not at the professional level, but at some level? Wouldn’t human culture be richer if everyone had a regular chance to participate in art-making? I think the answer to that question is a fairly obvious YES. But because of the difficult economic and social realities of the lives so many people lead, the ability to create art has become a privilege not everyone can afford. That too few people have access to. As a result, our culture remains duller than it needs to be: less rich for the loss of the voices not being heard. We need to keep finding ways to bring the practice of art-making to more and more marginalized people.
One such program with which I’ve become familiar over the years is The Possibility Project. This is an international organization that brings teens from diverse backgrounds together to write, direct, rehearse, perform, and produce an original musical based on their own lives. They meet weekly for many months, work incredibly hard, and contribute their energy and vitality to their communities in unnumbered ways… and they are utterly and permanently changed by the experience. I’ve been a proud supporter of the organization for many years.
The Possibility Project’s latest endeavor is really ambitious: a full-length feature film written, directed, and performed by youth living in foster care. KNOW HOW, as the film is called, captures the reality of life in foster care from the point of view of those living in it. But that meager description does little to convey what the effort is really about: the short trailer here does a much better job of showing off the film’s energy, intensity, and (if I may say so) possibility. It looks GREAT.
But it’s unfinished. It’s close to being done, but it needs help getting across the finish line: post-production, editing, scoring, etc. So I’m hoping that when you click that link and watch that trailer, you’ll also take a second to do one or both of the following two things:
- Support the film. Donate whatever you can to help finish this amazing film.
- Tell the world about KNOW HOW. Share this blog post (or write your own!) or the Kickstarter link on Facebook. Email them to friends. Tweet about @knowhowmovie, using the hashtag #fostercare. Just help amplify the message.
Thanks so much for helping make our world a richer place!