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Fate of Southern Theater still an open question

Posted by: Rohan Preston under Music, Theater, Dance Updated: May 3, 2011 - 1:43 PM
Photo by Southern Theater.
 
Will the Southern Theater, whose severe cash flow problems and huge debts led to the cancellations of many music and dance concerts, continue to exist?
 
Did it raise the $400,000 it sought to by its self-imposed April 30 deadline in order to stay in business?
 
And will it be able to lure back its major funder, the McKnight Foundation, which it lost after commingling, and spending, restricted funds for an artist fellowship program on operations?
 
Those questions await answers. Officials at the theater have pledged transparency and accountability and a new era for the company. Still, they have been unreachable since the fundraiser.
 
At their annual benefit on Saturday, attended by arts figures such as Ananya Chatterjea and Patrick Scully, officials were upbeat at the Southern’s prospects. Some board members said they felt confident the 205-seat venue will continue presenting dance, music and theater shows.
 
And it seems to be the case. The theater has been sending out press releases, one a day. None of them have addressed the questions of survival directly. Tuesday’s release suggests that the Southern will likely be presenting shows this summer.
 
The release trumpeted “The King is Dead,” a new work under the aegis of Jon Ferguson and John Heimbuch that is to premiere June 30.

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