Advocating for Our Community

At Portland Stage we agree to create and maintain a work environment that respects diverse ideas, races, genders, sexualities, abilities, culture, and religions, contribute to working in an anti-racist theater, and value Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Access (IDEA).

Land Use Acknowledgement

We are gathered on the unceded land of the Aucocisco and Abenaki peoples of the Wabanaki Confederacy. Portland Stage asks you to join us in acknowledging the Wabanaki community, their elders both past and present, as well as future generations. Portland Stage also acknowledges that it was founded upon exclusions and erasures of many Indigenous peoples, including those on whose land this institution is located. This acknowledgment demonstrates a commitment to beginning the process of working to dismantle the ongoing legacies of settler colonialism through our work at Portland Stage.

We encourage you to learn more about the peoples who stewarded the land that you now reside on whether you’re from here in Portland or are visiting from away. For more information click on the links below.

Maine's Connection to the Slave Trade

We also want to acknowledge that the history of Maine is deeply connected to the institution of slavery in the United States, and that residents of Maine participated in both slavery and the transatlantic slave trade even after slavery was outlawed in the District of Maine. While it may be easy to think of Maine and more specifically Portland as a very White place, we recognize that this is simply not the case and we are working to dismantle these harmful ideas. We encourage our audiences to visit the Abyssinian Meeting House or the Eastern Cemetery here in Portland, and to explore scholarship on the subject, like Lives of Consequence by Patricia Q. Wall, to learn more about this oft-neglected part of Maine’s history.

American Theater's Problematic History With Race

We recognize that the American Theater has also exploited, misrepresented, and excluded communities of Latine, Asian, Indigenous, and Middle Eastern descent for centuries. Portland Stage is recommitting to telling authentic stories from diverse backgrounds that all of our audiences can experience and enjoy.

Welcoming HHS to the Neighborhood

May 24, 2021 • Portland Stage supports the city’s decision to move its Health and Human Services to 39 Forest Avenue. In April, we had the opportunity to meet with Portland’s Mayor Kate Snyder and Councilor Mark Dion, who sits on the committee that was reviewing the move and the HHS leadership team. Based on our collaborative conversations at that time, Portland Stage’s Board of Directors voiced their support for the project.

We look forward to working with the HHS leadership team to ensure that everyone in our community feels welcome on our block. Portland Stage wants Portland to be not only a leading cultural center but also a leader in recognizing the dignity and worth of every individual in our community. We look forward to building synergies between our organizations.

Maine's Non-Profit Performing Arts

April 14, 2022 • Executive and Artistic Director Anita Stewart proudly received the Innovation & Creativity Award from Governor Janet Mills

on behalf of Maine’s performing arts leadership at the Governor’s Conference on Tourism. Watch the presentation

Aug 05, 2021 • Despite the current shutdown, the non-profit performing arts sector has not stood still. We continue to innovate, engage, and uplift our communities, primarily through free, online arts content developed and delivered with support from the PPP loan program. As PPP loan funds run out, and reopening our venues seems a distant hope, we join the many other businesses that have had to furlough or lay off employees further straining Maine’s unemployment system and economy. Read More