Dear World Rhythm Festival Community,
When you think “World Rhythm Festival,” what springs to mind? A smile? A beat? The joy of musical immersion? You know the magic of the WRF weekend: dynamic performances, rocking workshops, swirling drum circles, grooving outside on the grass, and inspired musical jams onstage!
On April 12-14, 2013, we will celebrate 20 years of the rich legacy of the Seattle World Rhythm Festival. We have some special plans in mind for this milestone Festival, and you will want to be there for sure!
Especially because . . .
AFTER 2013, what then?
Well, we don’t know — this is an important question this year. We put that question to you, the World Rhythm Festival Community to consider.
The central miracle of the World Rhythm Festival is how it has run on virtually 100% volunteer passion and community support. For 20 years! From the Founders’ original vision and organization, to the Artists who generously share their music, to our Vendors providing booth fees, to the Volunteers who make the weekend run so well, to the support we get from Seattle Center, and the city and county arts councils, and to YOU, our generous participants who donate and buy t-shirts — this Festival has been been born of our collective Desire and Willingness to make it happen.
In 2013: A leadership era is ending
There’s one more group of volunteers that has been at the center of it all: The Organizing Team. Our current team has roots and membership going back to at least 2005. We have put in countless hours over the years to set the stage and bring the pieces together, and we have been immensely rewarded by the myriad moments of art, happiness, and love that have sparkled at each Festival.
But life changes and calls us into new directions. Five of our longest-serving members must let go of our SWPS-WRF roles to make room for new directions in our lives.
WHAT THIS MEANS: New leadership must emerge, if SWPS and the World Rhythm Festival are to carry on after the 2013 Festival.
Now, we are plenty willing to help make a successful transition. Several current team members want to stay involved, however, not in the overall Festival and organization leadership positions. Those of us leaving are willing to advise and mentor.
So, the Big Question:
Is New Leadership for SWPS and the World Rhythm Festival out there in our Community?
This is a good opportunity for social entrepreneurs with good managerial and/or event planning skills to get experience leading a non-profit arts organization. It is not too much to do on a volunteer, spare-time basis, though it gets busy-intense in periods before the Festival. There is less to do the rest of the year, but an attitude of real commitment is necessary year-round.
If you want to see a “New Era” for SWPS and the WRF beyond the 2013 Festival, please visit our "PROSPECTUS" page to learn more details about the organization and what might come next. Then let’s talk! Helping with the 2013 Festival will be a great chance to learn.
We have always seen the World Rhythm Festival as a product of the skills, generosity, and desires of the drum and dance community. Are there new leaders out there who want to spin our 20 years of legacy and good will into a new era of Festival magic? What about you?
If you’re curious about the possibilities, please contact us at info [at] swps.org or 206-579-8163.
And thank you for your support over the years!
— Mary, Eric, Hooper, Trish, Tammy, Mollie, Linda & Dan