Declaration of Interdependence

Our mission at ONCE is to foster and support local artists and their art, to bring great events to the area, and to be a gathering space for community.

In the past four years, ONCE has succeeded in this mission; bringing a cavalcade of amazing One Night Creative Events to our neighborhood. Events that combine music, art, dance, wrestling and circus. Flea markets with hundreds of local crafts people. Political letter writing campaigns, soulful beat poetry, stunning weddings and heavy metal shows. Performances geared towards parents and young kids, the legendary Rock and Roll Rumble and Moth radio story tellers. We at ONCE are very proud to have cemented a nurturing space in the cultural community by hosting a wide array of diverse events and partnering with thousands of artists.

ONCE is a cultural incubator and gathering space and it is also a business. It is a business that lives in a chaotic realm – balancing on a knife edge of reasonably priced tickets and drinks while paying artists, staff, licenses, utilities, rent, taxes etc. The business model is quite simple on paper, but in the heart of ONCE we prioritize art over the mundane which makes that knife edge all the more sharp and tricky to balance on.

Over the next few months you will see changes at ONCE. Our mission will remain the same as will our focus to foster and support local artists and their art, to bring cool events to the neighborhood, and maintain our deep ties to the community by being a gathering space. But we must transition and hone to keep the business viable.

Please note that while we transition to a new internal structure, the GoFundMe that was set up in an emergency situation will remain untouched until such time as we have designated a clear and specific use for the donations. Broadly, the money will be exclusively used to keep ONCE open. But we want our donors to have the specifics about for what exact purpose the money will be used, and we want to emphasize that donors always have the option of a refund if in any way they feel the cause they thought they donated to is different from the decision made. Donors will be notified directly through the GoFundMe regarding the use of the money.

Thank you to our donors, for kindness and generosity of pocket and spirit. The contributions of money and well wishes on the GoFundMe page have been giving us emotional support as we work to understand what is best done for the longevity of the venue.

Although it is unclear what the future state of ONCE will be, we sincerely hope you stick with us in continuing to realize our vital mission of focusing on local arts and artists. We have a full calendar in July with hundreds of talented artists relying on this community to support them. Please show your support of those artists and come to an event! We will have a quiet August as we regroup and though we are not sure when we will reopen, we hope to fill the Fall with even more exciting events to bring the cultural community that much closer together.

For the love of art, and with sincere gratitude,
ONCE
www.oncesomerville.com