From Toronto to Detroit

Couple of articles I read yesterday – both to do with arts organizations, both to do with fundraising, with very interesting results. First, in Toronto:

Now playing at smaller theatres: the handyman special

“Bricks and mortar – the ball has been dropped across the country, there’s no doubt,” said Bradley Moss, artistic director at Edmonton’s Theatre Network, a company that was forced by rising construction estimates, changes in its board membership and the recession to shelve plans for a major expansion of its building, a 1938 movie house.

“[The venues] are all tired and waiting to be renovated – or torn down.”

I agree. unless you’ve got folks behind you with vision, it’s sexier to make something new than patch up what already exists. I worked in a theatre where I walked in one day and my desk chair was gone. It was on-stage because it was of the era the play took place in.
I always say if I ever win the big jackpot, I will have my own arts foundation that funds things like new computers, office supplies, decent chairs for staff and I’d call it the Avery Foundation after the labels.

Now let’s go south of the border –  to Detroit?

Why Arts Managers Short of Cash Are Looking at Detroit

Mr. Beal went to the voters, asking the residents of Michigan’s Macomb, Oakland and Wayne counties to pass a modest 10-year-long dedicated property-tax increase known as a “millage.” It would supply up to $23 million in public funding each year for the next decade—91% of the DIA’s annual operating budget—thus buying time for Mr. Beal and his colleagues to build up the museum’s operating endowment to the point where it can bring in sufficient income to pay the bills.

Read the rest of the article to find out if it worked. And have a good day.

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