BY CARY GINELL
We just received the following news release from Cabrillo Music Theatre:
It is with great sorrow that the Board of Directors of Cabrillo Music Theatre announces that it will suspend its productions at the conclusion of the 2015-2016 season, following the production of THE LITTLE MERMAID, running July 15-24, 2016.
As the only locally based professional musical theatre company and Resident Company at the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza for the last 22 years, this was a painful and difficult decision.
Escalating theatre costs, unmet commitments by the Civic Arts Plaza box office, a reduction in essential grant income from key funders, and a decline in ticket sales have created an insurmountable challenge. It is the judgment of the Board of Directors of Cabrillo Music Theatre that continuing to produce musicals at the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza, under the terms and conditions mandated by the City of Thousand Oaks, would be fiscally irresponsible.
The current environment makes Cabrillo Music Theatre more vulnerable to the highs and lows of box office sales and community support. Our dependence on private sector donors, corporate sponsors and grants has increased. But unfortunately those resources were not enough to sustain the organization. Our short and long-term stability is at stake and the Board of Cabrillo Music Theatre has determined that it would be negligent to move forward at this time with future shows and raise the risk of incurring more debt.
Sadly, the suspension of productions of Cabrillo Music Theatre means the cancellation of 2016-2017 season (EVITA, TARZAN, SISTER ACT, and PETER PAN). The loss of Cabrillo’s outreach programs for the U.S. Military, students from underserved schools, bringing entertainment to our community’s seniors, and finding homes for rescue animals, will be deeply felt throughout the community. Unfortunately, the absence of Cabrillo Music Theatre will result in a significant loss of income to local businesses, restaurants and stores, who benefitted by Cabrillo’s direct investments in the community, and by the hundreds of theatre artists each year, who help drive the local economy during roughly 40 weeks of production per season.
As the City of Thousand Oaks holds all funds generated by the season and single ticket purchases, all subscriptions for 2016-2017, and accompanying donations, will be returned to subscribers.
Cabrillo Music Theatre would like to thank our hardworking and supportive office staff, countless volunteers and faithful donors and sponsors, including the Alliance for the Arts, for their commitment to keeping the arts alive in Thousand Oaks. Most of all, Cabrillo would like to thank our tremendous subscribers, many of whom have been with Cabrillo for the full 22 years in the Civic Arts Plaza. There is no theatre without an audience, and Cabrillo Music Theatre audiences have been the very best partners we could imagine.
While this marks the end of Cabrillo Music Theatre’s current iteration at the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza, members of the Board of Directors will explore ways that Cabrillo can reinvent itself for a more secure future.
Cabrillo Music Theatre plans to outdo itself with our upcoming productions, CHILDREN OF EDEN and THE LITTLE MERMAID, two extraordinary shows that will entertain and inspire audiences. We hope that the community will show love and support for Cabrillo by attending these last two shows of the 2015-2016 season, and by helping us celebrate 22 years of excellence in the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza.