Friday, January 30, 2015

Information Regarding Actors Theatre of Phoenix Closing

After careful, and very emotional, consideration, the Actors Theatre Board of Directors announced on December 19 it had unanimously voted to cease operations and liquidate the professional theatre company. January 30 will be the final day of operations.

The simple truth is that the company is out of money.

This was not the result of a single event, but a combination of factors, primarily based on the fact that revenues - both earned and contributed - did not meet expectations and we found ourselves in a cash-flow crisis.

Over the past two years, the company made great strides and many changes and we heard from a broad base of individuals that Actors Theatre is important.

Unfortunately, while we agree with those opinions, they did not translate into the revenue necessary to sustain the organization and we were unable to significantly improve our financial position.

As we prepared to produce our next scheduled production, we looked at the situation to determine how best to move forward. We recognized the landscape has changed significantly and the environment is much different than it used to be.

We recognized what Actors Theatre does and, most importantly, the way we do it is not sustainable in our community at this time. Among our strongest guiding principles is to pay everyone - and that includes artists and arts workers - a living wage.

The economic dignity of all of our artists and arts workers is one of our highest values, but our donor base and individual and season ticket sales were not substantial enough to provide the financial resources to support the cost structure of professional artists to the degree it needed to be.

We are incredibly proud of Actors Theatre's legacy over nearly 30 years bringing thought-provoking, often edgy, but incredibly compelling theatre to the Valley. We know that many patrons left most of our productions affected by and talking about what they saw on stage.

Perhaps we will again see those or similar productions and the high professional quality of what went on both on and behind the stage.

In the meantime, and in spite of our deep, deep sadness at this time, we do know that there are many great arts and cultural opportunities in the Valley. Perhaps we will be part of them again sometime in the future.

We are grateful to all the artists and arts workers for 30 years of important work. We are grateful to the community for 30 years of support.

Our permanent records will live at the Arizona Historical Society.

Actors Theatre is no longer an organization that exists in the present but rather one that exists only in reflection.

Matthew Wiener, Producing Artistic Director
Erica Black, Managing Director
Board of Directors

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