SOUTH BEND, Ind. — A community theater in South Bend is entering its 60th season on the brink of insolvency, but its board has committed to measures to save the organization.
The South Bend Tribune (http://bit.ly/2bRfxRJ ) reports that the South Bend Civic Theatre posted a deficit of almost $283,000 in 2014, and around $195,000 in 2012. Board of directors president Terry Bush confirmed that the theater also finished 2015 in the red but declined to say by how much.
“The short answer is we didn’t have the kind of revenue from ticket sales or sponsorships or donations to cover our expenses,” Bush said. “That’s been a challenge. … Any time you have a shortfall, it forces you to pay attention to that, and it has.”
Interim Executive Director Rebecca J. Bonham said the board has committed itself to revitalizing the theater.
“I don’t think this board deliberately ignored anything,” she said. “Also, it happens over time. It’s slow. . My experience with this board is these people are really committed and dedicated.”
To help its financial situation, the board says it will work to increase ticket revenue, streamline the organization and make its operations more efficient, and refocus its donation efforts.
In its most recent move, the theater has submitted its notice to end its lease of The Firehouse building on Portage Ave. The theater had previously occupied the structure for 48 years. It retained its lease when it moved to its new location.
Civic pays $1 a year to the city to lease The Firehouse, but also pays its utilities and maintenance costs, which, Bonham said, are about $15,000 a year.
Information from: South Bend Tribune, http://www.southbendtribune.com