Sleepy Hollow Theatre & Arts Park began providing artistic opportunities to youth and audiences in the Bismarck-Mandan community in 1990. We have since produced over 50 Broadway Style Musicals for 30 years and involved 185,000 students, teachers, orchestra members, volunteers, and over 200,000 audience members.
Our Commitment and Dedication to fanning the “spark of creativity” has grown over the years. Witnessing maturation in confidence and skills has been our inspiration. In 2007 SHTAP began producing a second musical theatre production to provide more opportunity to educate students, highlight talent and enrich our communities and state. In 2017, we started a third production due to the need for more training.
SHTAP received the J.C. Penny's Golden Rule Award in 1991, the National Endowment on the Arts Challenge America Award in 2003, the Greater North Dakota Association Leadership Award in 2003, and in 2011 the North Dakota Governor's Award for the Arts.
SHTAP is a member of the North Dakota Council on the Arts, Bismarck-Mandan Chamber of Commerce, Dakota West Arts Council and Institute of Outdoor Drama.
STATEMENTS OF SUPPORT
The Sleepy Hollow Theatre and Arts Park (SHTAP) honors and acknowledges that our Theater Center in the state of North Dakota sits upon the ancestral lands and unceded territory of the Mandan, Hidatsa, Arikara, the Yanktonai, Sisseton, Wahpeton, Hunkpapa, Dakotah/Lakotah, and Pembina Chippewa, Cree and Metis. And offer our respect to elders both past and present. We recognize the vital importance of speaking thoughts into action, especially concerning the legacies of violence, displacement, migration, and settlement that bring us together. We make this reminder to ourselves, and to you, so that we may commit ourselves to dismantling the structures of colonization in our practice.
Since activities at SHTAP are also shared digitally to the internet, we take this moment to acknowledge and consider the legacy of colonization embedded within the technologies, structures, and ways of thinking we use every day. We are using equipment and high speed internet not available in many Indigenous communities. Even the technologies that are central to much of the art we make leave significant carbon footprints, contributing to changing climates that disproportionately affect Indigenous peoples worldwide. We invite you to join us in acknowledging this as well as our shared responsibility: to make good of this time, and for each of us to consider our roles in reconciliation, decolonization, and allyship.
Credit and Thanks: Adrienne Wong of SpiderWebShow, Ontario, Canada, who wrote the acknowledgement upon which the above digital acknowledgement is based.
As we together face a moment of reckoning with the insidious forces of racism in our world – compounded by a pandemic and its resulting economic devastation – we are reminded of Zora Neale Hurston’s prophetic words. This is our present, but it has been made by our past, and it informs how we move forward to a more just, equitable, and anti-racist future.
Today and every day, we join our members, artists, and all people of conscience in standing against the forces of bigotry and racism. We have a long way to go in this fight, but as Ms. Hurston observed, the future will be born from the actions we take today.
To the families of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, Tony McDade, Sean Reed and the incalculable number who have lost loved ones at the hands of racist violence: we see you, support you, and stand with you. Black lives matter. They always have, and they always will.
At SHTAP, our mission and core values are to lift up and support artists for the theater community, to celebrate audiences whose lives are enriched by what artists create on stage. For many years, we have dedicated ourselves to anti-racist practices in our work, and we recommit today to those values and practices. We will continue to align theater as a tool to uplift voices that need to be heard, so that we all may connect, challenge, and create a better, more just world.
The Board, Artists, Volunteers, Patrons and Staff of SHTAP stand in solidarity against racism and hate. The future has yet to be written.