Since the Arkansas Repertory Theatre made the announcement on April 24, 2018, that the theatre were suspending operations, several important steps have been taken.
Overall, they can be summarized by the mantra which is guiding the Rep leadership during this time: PROFESSIONAL, AFFORDABLE, & SUSTAINABLE.
- Within just the first few weeks since the news broke, the Rep has received more than 550 gifts totaling almost $220,000. Every dollar given right now is being matched by the Windgate Charitable Foundation, and monthly and multi-year pledges make it possible to be even more generous with giving.
- The Rep Board has appointed a volunteer Interim Leadership Team consisting of Rep founder Cliff Baker and Rep board members Bill Rector and Ruth Shepherd.
- The Rep has formed an “Our Next Act” Steering Committee of board and community leaders who are examining every facet of Rep operations and make recommendations to The Rep Board for action. The aim is to have a plan by mid-August about how to reopen The Rep after this brief intermission.
- The theatre is in the process of selling the building which was used as actor housing. That will reduce our property debt by nearly half. There are many more options for housing actors downtown near the Rep than there were when those apartments were originally acquired.
- The Rep is planning community listening sessions to get Little Rock’s best thinking and ideas. Check soon on the Rep’s website to learn how you can participate. (Also, make plans to attend the Clinton School presentation on the future of the Rep featuring Ruth Shepherd on Thursday, June 7 at 12 noon at Sturgis Hall.)
- The education programs will continue throughout the summer with programming for rising K-12 students. There are still a few slots left, so check the education section of the Rep’s website for class information.
While much progress has been made, the work is far from over. The Rep still needs support from the public, financial and otherwise.
Repertorium Praeter Theatrum