About Portland Revels
Portland Revels Staff
Midwinter Revels Music Director
Music Director Emeritus
Board of Directors – Officers
Board of Directors – Directors
In December of 1994, in the Mago Hunt Theatre at the University of Portland, a newly-minted “Rose City Revels” boldly put on a “sampler” show of songs and dances from the original Christmas Revels. This rousing, ambitious test of local interest featured John Langstaff (founder of The Revels in Cambridge), the Bridgetown Morris Men, the Rose City Gay Freedom Band, an enthusiastic group of barely-rehearsed-enough children, and a wonderful, if small, chorus of ready singers under the direction of Russ Oelheim.
A small crowd of 200 loved it, sang along, and danced all over the theater with the cast-the first “Lord of the Dance” in Portland! It was an auspicious start, full of enthusiasm and ready talent. The following year, 1995, at Portland State University’s Lincoln Hall, the first fully-staged Christmas Revels drew 1,500 people to five performances. Since then, Portland Revels has grown; the Midwinter Revels now draws over 5000 patrons yearly.
Do you follow us on social media? You may have noticed that we have begun to have monthly features highlighting alumni from our productions as well as those in the Portland community who are making the world a better place. Through our Alumni Spotlights and Lightbearers we are thrilled to have an opportunity to celebrate and lift up our friends and neighbors.
Portland Revels celebrates our human connectedness at the darkest time of year, and aims to honor a multitude of cultures and backgrounds. We commit to being allies to all people. We embrace the work we must do to recognize our own implicit biases and cultural blind spots, and to dismantle structural barriers within our organization. We strive to educate ourselves and to engage in authentic exchanges of ideas and worldviews. We believe that nurturing a safe space is not enough, but that we need to further our commitment by fostering brave spaces where individuals can authentically and respectfully challenge one another, generating conversation and further education.
We commit to being people who promote active anti-racist measures on interpersonal, societal, and institutional levels, within our organization and elsewhere. As with the cyclical pattern of the seasons, we recognize the dynamic and ever-evolving nature of this work, and enthusiastically commit to it.
How We are fulfilling our commitment
– Actively solicit feedback from individuals who work with us (artists, contractors, community partners, staff, etc.).
– Invest in education and resources for internal stakeholders to broaden knowledge and understanding of active anti-racist and IDEA practices.
– Individually cultivate the ability to examine, reflect, and take responsibility for our own personal journeys.
– Seek out, engage, and uplift BIPOC voices and those of other marginalized communities.
*With license to grow and evolve!
Our community owes its existence and vitality to those who came before us, who stewarded the land through the changing seasons for millennia and whose lives created the story that has led us to this moment.
We recognize that the City of Portland sits on the unceded traditional village sites of the Multnomah, Kathlamet, Clackamas, Tumwater, Watlala bands of the Chinook, the Tualatin Kalapuya, Molalla and many others who made their homes along the Columbia River.
We offer our respect and appreciation to the generations of Indigenous people that came before and to those who continue to actively work to care for the land. Today, Portland’s diverse and vibrant Native communities are 70,000 strong, descended from more than 380 Tribes, both local and distant.
We invite you all to take a moment to consider the many legacies that bring us together in community.
Portland Revels Non-Discrimination Policy
Portland Revels does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national or ethnic origin, gender, sexual orientation, age or religion in regard to participation in any of its activities or hiring policies: as a volunteer, contract employee, or administrative staff.