Never in our lifetime, nor yours I suspect, have we, as a world population, had to face such a situation as we find ourselves in today. Our company has had to make some very difficult decisions, as many of our fellow arts organizations have, in these last few weeks. This is the first time in 100 years we have shuttered our doors.
This is a time of human crisis, and in situations such as this the arts have always been there to offer solace, comfort, unification and indeed escapism. I know we shall all get past this, and look forward to coming back with a revived sense of gusto and exhilaration ready to entertain with joy, laughter, love, hope, and acceptance.
It goes without saying, that these are trying times financially for us. Without immediate donor support, we estimate our total projected losses due to the shutdown in response to the COVID-19 pandemic will be upwards of $1.3 million.
In addition, the Partners That Heal outreach team will not be able to provide direct health services to hospital patients, especially children, who are experiencing severe and prolonged isolation from their families during this crisis. Clinical testing at Phoenix Children’s Hospital has proven that these interventions help with doctor-patient communication, improve patient mood, reduce fear and facilitate optimal health care delivery. Partners That Heal techniques can also help strengthen staff resiliency and reduce burnout – a very real problem in hospitals overwhelmed with COVID-19 cases.
As of this writing, we are the last major arts organization in the metro area that has not laid off full time employees. As the state’s largest professional theatre and largest employer of performing artists, we take our leadership in this area seriously, however the consequence will be an enormous hit to our bottom line. We employ 48 full time artists and arts administrators who possess very specialized skill sets and represent the best of the best in this region. It will be hard to revive the company if we lose these core employees – it will have a devastating impact on our ability to offer professional-level artistic production for years to come. We hope you will support us, as an employer of hundreds of the state’s finest professional artists.
Thank you for your gift to The Phoenix Theatre Company. We are looking forward to lighting our stages back up and having the community back in our home.
From our family to yours, we wish you much love, great health, and safety.
Michael Barnard, Producing Artistic Director & Vincent VanVleet, Managing Director
For questions on how you or your employer can support The Phoenix Theatre Company please contact Marisa Butler, Director of Development, at 602.889.5288 or firstname.lastname@example.org.