October update from Executive Director – Hugh Hallinan
October 16, 2020
To Our Cabaret Community,
We need your support and understanding now like never before. Therefore, we are kicking off the Save the Cabaret 2020 Campaign today with the release of our own mini-documentary. Our goal is to raise a minimum of $5,000 a month so we can pay our rent and cover some other essentials. After the presidential election, we hope the emergency funding bill for small businesses (that has been held up in congress) will be approved so that we can survive until we can safely re-open.
As you may have heard, Phase 3 of Connecticut’s re-opening rolled out on October 8. However, it restricts the capacity of venues to 50% which has a near-impossible challenge to small venues like the Cabaret. Furthermore, phase 3 prohibits any performance that includes singing. Obviously, we cannot offset this seating capacity reduction by increasing the price of a ticket by 100%. We are working on ideas to re-open The Little Mermaid in December with pre-recorded singing, and a 30% COVID ticket surcharge, 30% reduction in production costs, and a combination of a 20% reduction in employee pay and a 20% reduction in what is already a small staff. If this works out, our next plan is to re-open our popular Decades in Concert: Sounds of the 70’s early in the new year. Hopefully, after that, we will be able to start reversing the ticket surcharge and other budget cuts as we climb out of the grips of the COVID-19 pandemic.
We cannot sugarcoat the fact that after over 40 years of entertaining Fairfield County and beyond, the Downtown Cabaret Theatre is in real danger of closing. If you’re able to, please support the Save the Cabaret 2020 campaign each month until we see the light at the end of the tunnel.
Now, we’re extremely excited to share with you a mini-documentary by our very own Phill Hill. Some of our company actors and directors have taken the time to discuss onstage mishaps, their favorite roles, the best part of rehearsals, their favorite memories, and more. It will give you a peek behind the curtain and show a side to the actors and directors you don’t get to see on stage.
But first, a huge THANK YOU to our incredible sponsors:
R.D. Scinto Inc
People’s United Bank,
Faxon Law Group
The State of CT DECD
The Federal SBA
…and to former employee Katherine Kimura who donated $5,000 in June which will now be called Kimura Month! Thank you, Kathrine.
And thank you all for your support.
Hugh Hallinan | Executive Director
Archive COVID updates:
Letter from Executive Director to ticket holders for canceled shows between 3/16/20 and 5/17/20
April 3, 2020
Dear Cabaret Patron,
This is a difficult letter to write but these are extraordinary times. There is a little something at the end of the letter that I hope will give those of you with kids cooped up at home a break. Yes, there’s a catch!
Now that some time has passed and the immense impact COVID-19 is having on our society is coming to light, a few things have become clearer where a lot of businesses are concerned. The Cabaret was dealt a devastating blow and the full ramifications are continuing to unfold. As a small non-profit, the Cabaret survives off of the box office sales week to week and we constantly adjust budgets according to how the box office is performing. We rarely have cash reserves but thanks to the box office smash Mamma Mia we briefly did, only for it to be completely drained due to declining ticket sales in the weeks leading up to the Governor shutting down theatres entirely.
On March 15 we shut down four productions, The Little Mermaid and The Bodyguard along with The Wizard of Oz and Matilda that were already well into rehearsals and set and costume construction. These four shows upfront production costs were about the same sum of money that would be needed if we had to refund every ticket sold for those shows. Without cash reserves, Cabaret is not able to make any refunds unless we obtain a loan from an SBA Disaster Program. While many of you have chosen to take credit to use when we open back up, I understand that others are not in a position to do that under the current circumstances. An SBA loan has been applied for. If we are approved and receive enough funds we will try to process refunds accordingly.
The “little something” with a catch!
Known among our senior staff is ‘The Vault’. Inside of The Vault is 27 archive videos of our award-winning and critically acclaimed Children’s Shows. Not only do the critics and kids love these clever adaptations of classic children’s stories written by our very own in-house playwright Phill Hill, the parents more times than not enjoy the shows much more than they anticipated! What’s the catch to get access to The Vault where you can pick and choose from 27 shows or choose them all with full access for a month? You have to convert your tickets or credits into a 100% tax-deductible donation. That’s the catch. Those of you who have already donated your tickets or made a donation over $100 since March 1, 2020, are eligible to access The Vault.
To make your donation or request access to The Vault, fill out this form which will be processed by Gisela at our satellite box office. You will then get an email with a link to Vimeo and a password. Donations will be processed in the order they are received. Please allow 24 hours to process your request.
You are on the honor system once you receive your link and password. PLEASE don’t share it outside of the party that would have attended the show with you. Instead, encourage friends to make a
donation of $100 or more to get access to The Vault click here. (Use the link above if you have tickets)
Your loyalty and support is why Cabaret has been here for over forty years. Help us continue the tradition.
Wishing you and your family a healthy voyage through these times.
Hugh Hallinan | Executive Director
This letter only applies to ticket holders whose show was canceled due to COVID-19 pandemic Between March 16 and May 17, 2020.
Walk up box office is closed until further notice.
Remote Box Office by phone only (203) 576-1636: Tuesday – Friday 10 am – 12 pm.
Other ticket inquiries by email: firstname.lastname@example.org