Financial struggles affecting southern Alberta performing arts groups – Lethbridge |

On November 17, a longtime community theater organization in southern Alberta launched an urgent fundraising campaign after it said it overstated audience appetite for recent shows.

according to this Website, New West Theater $150,000 is needed to help save their operations.

The organization has been in operation for more than three decades, but the COVID-19 pandemic explained and subsequent recovery during tough economic times has left it shaky.

“The donations received will go toward a variety of expenses including salaries, rent, utilities and day-to-day operations,” New West Theater said.

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Others haven’t been immune to recent financial issues either.

“I wish I could say it was a surprise, but we as a company are struggling financially to even keep things afloat,” said Deonnie Hudson, interim artistic director of Theater Outre.

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“As someone who has worked as an artist in the company, (I) am really grateful for the support we’ve seen so far,” said director Graham Reneck.

Renick, who also teaches at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario, is directing the New West Theatre’s upcoming musical revue show Filmwhich they hope will appeal to a wider audience.

The show includes famous songs and sketch comedy.

“Moving forward, this is how to … continue to serve the community in ways they are familiar with, as we FilmRenick said.

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Theater Outre, which is celebrating its 10th anniversary as Alberta’s only queer theater company, recently filled half its seats for the holiday production.

“Audiences aren’t coming out like they did before COVID, and COVID is still a thing,” Hudson said, adding that she doesn’t want to put all the pressure on attendees — inflation costs people money. refraining from doing. Ticket.

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“There has also been a reduction in funding and grants available to performers.”

When it comes to music, the Lethbridge Symphony Orchestra is seeing “steady” support, but said it still could use more.

“That’s what I’m hearing from across the country,” said executive director Vicki Hegedus.

“From BC to Halifax and Fredericton … orchestras across the country are being challenged financially.”

Renick hopes students and other potential artists don’t shy away from the industry.

“I think it’s a really, really exciting time to be in the industry, because there are more avenues to go into it — you just have to be a little creative about it,” he said.

“People are inventing new forms and new approaches to the industry that are also changing existing cheaters.”

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