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REPORT TO THE COMMUNITY
A MESSAGE FROM THE CHAIRMAN & PRESIDENT Dear Friends, For almost 90 years, PPAC has been a cultural and artistic gem for Providence and the State of Rhode Island. Today, it thrives by breathing life, vibrancy and economic gain into the region, honoring the cultural tapestry of the Ocean State and inspiring generations of people to learn, express and become. We are especially proud of the lasting impact PPAC has on the local arts community through our outreach initiatives and ongoing restoration projects. The Report to the Community is a means of staying connected by informing you of our initiatives, achievements and progress. We want to communicate to the public our mission – to serve, preserve and maintain – and, more importantly, celebrate PPAC’s strong commitment to our community. Recent highlights include:
Achieving a year-over-year increase in the total number of Annual Fund donors and raising over $450,000 to fully support our Community Outreach Programs.
Maintaining a strong subscriber base and single ticket sales, welcoming nearly 400,000 people into the Theatre each year and producing more than $26 million in spending for the local community.
PPAC is ranked the #1 thing to do in Providence by Trip Advisor and earned their Certificate of Excellence.
Board of Directors Chairman Joseph W. Walsh, Esq. & President J.L. “Lynn” Singleton with Jay Leno at 2015 Annual Gala Photo by Core Photographic
PPAC launched the national tour of Beautiful – The Carole King Musical in September 2015 and Roundabout Theatre Company’s Cabaret in January 2016. PPAC will also launch the national tours of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s The King and I in November 2016 and Miss Saigon in Fall 2018.
PPAC is ranked 21st for ticket sales and attendance in POLLSTAR’S 2015 Top 200 Theatre Venues Worldwide and ranked 14th amongst theaters in the United States.
Thanks to a committed Board of Directors, effective staff, devoted volunteers, strong performance schedules and dedicated donors, PPAC continues to successfully uphold its mission to the community. We strongly encourage you to visit us online at ppacri.org, like us on Facebook (ProvPacRI) and follow us on Twitter and Instagram (@ProvPacRI). Sincerely,
Joseph W. Walsh, Esq. J.L. “Lynn” Singleton Chairman President
OUR MISSION The PPAC Mission is Three-Fold To serve the entertainment needs of the State’s various populations by presenting the widest possible variety of high quality arts and cultural events To preserve the historic integrity and beauty of the building
To maintain fiscal responsibility
PPAC is a non-profit organization with an ongoing commitment to give back to and demonstrate arts leadership in the community by:
Community Outreach Programs Every dollar donated to PPAC’s Annual Fund is used to support the Theatre’s Community Outreach Initiative. Each year, this Initiative brings theater to life for thousands of audience members and emerging artists by making available low or no-cost programming.
Bank of America Arts Showcase
Big Dreams Begin with Broadway (Seats for Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Ocean State)
Presenting community programs
Providing resources to local non-profits
From Books to Broadway
Engaging in community collaborations
Seats for Service Members
Wonders of the Wurlitzer
SEATS FOR SERVICE MEMBERS PPAC’s Seats for Service Members program gives members of the Rhode Island National Guard/USO New England and their families the opportunity to experience live theater first-hand by providing underwritten “preferred seating” to the Theatre’s Broadway performances throughout the year. PPAC created the Seats for Service Members program as a means to express the community’s gratitude and appreciation for our service members’ outstanding sacrifices and courageous efforts. This program is fully funded by generous donations from our community and would not be possible without the help of our sponsors.
Silver Sponsors Raymond J. & Brenda Bolster Thomas & Collette Fay Johnson & Wales University New England Laborer’s Health & Safety Fund New England Laborer’s Labor Management Cooperation Trust Taco/White Family Foundation Bronze Sponsors Bank of America Dimeo Construction Company
PROGRAM SPONSORS: Gold Sponsors Coastway Community Bank MetLife Home and Auto National Grid Navigant Credit Union Nordstrom Nortek, Inc. Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems Rhode Island Commodores TD Charitable Foundation
Rhode Island Commodores reception Photo by Core Photographic
WONDERS OF THE WURLITZER The Theatre’s one-of-a-kind 1927 Wurlitzer Theatre Pipe Organ is one of only three of its kind left in the country and PPAC’s organ remains the only fully functioning Wurlitzer in that group! To highlight this rare treasure, the Wurlitzer free concert series was presented for the first time in the spring of 1988. Since then, it has remained a regular part of the Theatre’s annual show schedule and has developed its own loyal following. Concerts are held on specific Wednesdays in the spring and fall. All performances are free and open to the public. People of all ages come to listen to the music performed by local organists who share their time and talent to keep a treasured tradition alive. Silent movies, sing-alongs, vocalists and other local performers add variety to the performances. Donations to the Annual Fund for Community Outreach provides ongoing upkeep and maintenance for the organ, a fee paid to each organist and complimentary coffee and soft drinks for patrons attending the performance. Each year, Wonders of the Wurlitzer brings musical memories and appreciation to our local patrons!
BANK OF AMERICA ARTS SHOWCASE Each year, the Bank of America Arts Showcase enables approximately 10,000 middle school students to attend PPAC during regular school hours to experience the joy and creativity of live theater. Performed on the PPAC stage by local professional performing arts groups, the Arts Showcase is designed to entertain, educate and inspire student audiences in new ways. Since the program’s inception in 1998, more than 180,000 Rhode Island middle school students have attended and enjoyed underwritten live performances at PPAC!
Over the years, the Theatre has hosted many special performances for middle school children. Here are some of the repeat favorites and recent new performers at the Arts Showcase: Atwater & Donnelly “Traditional American Folk Music & Dance” Carlos de Leon “Rhythms of Latin America” Everett Dance Company “The Marriage of Art & Science” Island Moving Company “Field Trip” interpretive dance Keith Michael Johnson “Bubbleology” Marvelous Marvin “How the Body Works” Mixed Magic Theatre “Shakespeare in the Spirit” Pendragon “Music in the Celtic Tradition” Rob the Drummer “Be the Best You Can Be”
Festival Ballet performer Photo by John Tabor Jacobson
The Tsetse Initiative “Bullying Prevention Concert”
2015 Camp Broadway
CAMP BROADWAY® The authentic world of Broadway comes to Providence through this one-of-a-kind program, lead by a nine-member staff of New York theater professionals. Each year at Camp Broadway, 100 children ages 10-17 experience the magic of presenting a show in a professional, interactive environment. Held each August, the fun, intensive day camp is designed to teach the fundamentals of a Broadway production through classes and workshops in singing, dancing and theater arts, lunch with professional artists, Camp Broadway t-shirts and a Family Finale performance – all in only five days!
Photo by Core Photographic
Thanks to a generous grant from The Robert F. Stoico/FIRSTFED Charitable Foundation, PPAC offers ten Camp Broadway scholarships each year to children who demonstrate financial need. Starting in 2016, PPAC donors to the Annual Fund for Community Outreach will provide up to twenty additional Camp Broadway scholarships each year to children who demonstrate financial need. Thanks to you, Broadway’s future stars can be discovered right here at PPAC!
ARTS SCHOLARSHIPS Generously supported in part by The Textron Charitable Trust
Since 1996, PPAC’s ARTS Scholarships programs have provided financial assistance to qualified, talented Rhode Island students who wish to attend local, summer arts education programs that further develop their abilities in a chosen area of study. Scholarships help cover tuition and supplies and provide the rare opportunity for students to enhance their artistic abilities outside the traditional classroom leading to exploration, growth and confidence.
2015 ARTS Scholarships winners Photo by Core Photographic
Each year, 30 scholarships are awarded to Rhode Island students aged 11 – 14. Since the program’s inception, PPAC has granted $260,000 in scholarships to over 550 middle school students, affording each recipient a summer vacation filled with artistic exploration, challenge and achievement.
FROM BOOKS TO BROADWAY Generously supported in part by The Robert F. Stoico / FIRSTFED Charitable Foundation
From Books to Broadway exposes middle and high school students to the Theatre by providing underwritten tickets to Broadway shows combined with a cast member “meet and greet.” The program brings Broadway show information into the schools in a way that emphasizes the show’s educational aspects as well as information about production values, costumes and other theater topics. Visiting cast members discuss their education, experience and how they entered touring theatricals; in some cases, the cast members may even demonstrate some of their skills. This program has given hundreds of students the rare opportunity to attend a live Broadway
Matthew J. Kuss Middle School students from Fall River, MA attended The Sound of Music Photo by John Tabor Jacobson
performance along with the personal connection of meeting cast members and gaining insight into their theatrical careers.
BIG DREAMS BEGIN WITH BROADWAY Big Dreams Begin with Broadway offers prime orchestra seats for Broadway or Encore performances throughout the season to Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Ocean State (BBBSOS) to distribute to their “bigs”
(mentors) and “littles” (children). For many children in the BBBSOS program, this may be the very first time they get to experience live theater or their first visit to PPAC.
ANNUAL GALA & RESTORATION Each season, PPAC’s Annual Gala brings together over 600 supporters from within our community for an elegant evening of entertainment and spectacular food prepared by some of Rhode Island’s top restaurants and catering companies. Contributions to the Annual Gala benefit the Theatre’s Restoration Fund, which is set aside for building repairs and upgrades. Most recently, PPAC completed the energy efficient window replacement in the Loew’s office building, upgraded the HVAC system to provide better cooling in the Theatre balcony, completely renovated the backstage dressing rooms and replaced the carpet throughout the entire Theatre. Upcoming projects include new HVAC for the stage and replacement of the fabric wall covering in the Theatre.
CELEBRATE! For almost 90 years, this magnificent Theatre building has been a Rhode Island gem and cultural icon for the Ocean State. Help it sparkle and shine for years to come by attending Rhode Island’s most anticipated Annual Gala. PPAC Gala patrons enjoy prime seating for the show, complimentary parking and an exclusive post show reception!
2015 GALA Jay Leno
2016 GALA Kristin Chenoweth
ANNUAL GALA HISTORY 1978
Sandler & Young
Music of Andrew Lloyd Weber
Will Rogers Follies
Phantom Masked Ball
Disney’s Beauty & The Beast
Disney’s The Lion King
Radio City Christmas Spectacular
The Phantom of The Opera
DISTINGUISHED FRIENDS Every several years, PPAC recognizes donors for their long standing, generous support of the Theatre. In recognition of their continuous contribution over the past ten years to PPAC’s Annual Fund, PPAC honored these donors as our “Distinguished Friends.”
Distinguished Friends Award Photo by James Zompa
HONOREES J. Michael & Jeanne Abbott Mr. & Mrs. Joseph A. Aceto Patty & Mel Alperin Linda Anderson Richard & Yolanda Battista Peter & Kelly Benoit Rhonda Berchuck & Kat Katrouzos Roland & Carole Bernardo Big Blue Bug Solutions Karyn & Keith Bilezerian Stephen & Susan Burlone Gabriella & Frank T. Caprio Dorothy Cardon Frank & Beverly Cardoza Sam & Deb Ciotola Richard & Joan DiChiaro Richard M. Divver Lynne C. Eagles Antonio & Dianne Fonseca Sofie Garabedian Arlene Goldstein Lori Grimes Greg & Donna Hoffman Tony Inamorati & Cammie Naylor Mr. & Mrs. Donald E. Kilguss, Jr. David & Cathleen Laverty
Paul A. MacDonald Diane & Mark Marini Maron Construction Co., Inc. Vincent P. Matarese Keith & Wendi Metters Bev Najarian Hal & Nancy Nelson Jack & Linda Newman Bob & Linda Newman Barbara Page, Denise & Scott Shippee Rhode Island State Council on the Arts Patricia Roppe Gregg & Pam Rosen Richard & Lorraine Sebastiao J.L. “Lynn” Singleton The Souto Family Mr. Gary J. Stallard Eugenia Shao & Neil Steinberg Sheri & Don Sweitzer Ronald & Adrienne Trottier Gregory & Joyce Troy Frank L. Veto, Esq. Ms. Marilyn Walsh Michael M. Woody & Joanne Speroni-Woody Christopher & Megan Young
COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIPS Learn It to Earn It is a partnership between PPAC and Rhode Island Monthly. The intent of the program is to bring the excitement of live theater to students who may not have the opportunity to experience it otherwise. Up to 100 students from Central Falls High School attended a matinee performance of The Sound of Music with tickets underwritten by proceeds from the 2015 Best of Rhode Island Party.
Macy’s Family Night is a partnership between PPAC and Macy’s Providence Place. Through this partnership, hundreds of Rhode Island children have been able to attend a designated Broadway performance that they may not otherwise be able to see.
The Sound of Music cast at Learn It to Earn It
Macy’s Providence Place Vice President/Store Manager Bob Clayton with children at Macy’s Family Night at The Sound of Music
Photo by John Tabor Jacobson
Photo by John Tabor Jacobson
VOLUNTEER USHER PROGRAM The PPAC volunteer usher staff is among the most dedicated group of people you’ll ever come in contact with…and if you’ve attended a performance at PPAC, you have been in contact with at least one of the 300 members of that group! Seating, directing and assisting upward of 3,100 patrons so they can comfortably and safely enjoy the performance is no easy task. They dedicate thousands of hours each season to ensure things run smoothly at every performance. Ushers are students, members of the community and local business people.
2015 Aisle Captains Photo by Claudia Zompa
Many are senior citizens who have been performing this civic act continuously for more than 15 years. In their service to the Theatre, they have become a family and have forged relationships that last a lifetime.
VOLUNTEER GREETER PROGRAM Now in its 20th season, PPAC’s Volunteer Greeter Program offers an exciting opportunity for high school students to volunteer their time at the Theatre. Greeters welcome patrons to Broadway performances, answer questions and assist PPAC’s Marketing Department in implementing surveys and other promotions. Adult Greeter Coordinators, who also volunteer their time, oversee the greeters on performance
nights. This program provides a great opportunity for students to develop their conversation skills, increase their confidence levels and experience live Broadway musicals! PPAC Volunteer Greeters Photo by Leah Fellman
PPAC BOARD OF DIRECTORS
J.L. “Lynn” Singleton
Joseph W. Walsh, Esq., Chairman Mark T. Ryan, Esq., First Vice Chairman Thomas A. Tanury, Second Vice Chairman Ellen Barnes, Secretary J. Joseph Kruse, Treasurer Richard L. Bready Gabriella DiGiacinto Caprio Darren Corrente, Esq. Jason M. DaPonte Guillaume de Ramel Richard E. DiChiaro The Hon. Jorge O. Elorza (Ex-Officio) Thomas P. Fay Gary E. Furtado Ari Gabinet Jay Howell Lowell W. Kinch The Hon. James R. Langevin (Ex-Officio) Cynthia Laughlin Barbara S. Lavine E. Robert Lupone Paul A. MacDonald Robin L. Main, Esq. Lori Merolla Terrence P. Moran
George H. Nee The Hon. Joseph R. Paolino, Jr. Gary M. Penfield Lawrence E. Purtill Jo-Ann Ragosta The Hon. Gina M. Raimondo (Ex-Officio) The Hon. Jack Reed (Ex-Officio) Thomas J. Rossi David Salit Stephen Shechtman, Esq. Robert Stoico Donald R. Sweitzer Zeno Trabucchi Gregory Troy Susan Weiner Stanley Weiss John Hazen White, Jr. William A. White William K. Wray
DIRECTOR REPRESENTATIVES Theresa M. Agonia (The Honorable Jorge O. Elorza) Seth Klaiman (The Honorable James R. Langevin) Stephen Neuman (The Honorable Gina Raimondo) Raymond Simone (The Honorable Jack Reed)
BOX OFFICE Stephanie Santos Box Office Manager
Alan J. Chille
Box Office Supervisor/ The VETS Box Office Manager
Norbert H. Mongeon, Jr.
Box Office Supervisor
General Manager Director of Finance & Programming
Director of Marketing
Director of Ticketing
Richard DeFilippo Kelly Prudent
Box Office Supervisor
Box Office Supervisor
Director of Concerts
FINANCE & HUMAN RESOURCES
Christopher J. Myers
Cynthia A. Goldsmith
Keith J. Labrecque
Director of Information Systems Director of Special Projects/ Assistant to the President
ADMINISTRATIVE SUPPORT Rosemary A. Sienko-Koehler Office Manager
Inez M. Bush
Receptionist/Lost & Found Recovery
Amanda Bonafine Booking Manager
Assistant to the Director of Finance & Programming
Administrative Assistant to the General Manager
IT Assistant/SharePoint Administrator
Heather M. Bizon Accountant
Human Resources Coordinator
OPERATIONS/HOUSE Nick Berardinelli
Betsy Menders Events Manager
Director of Security
Bruce Ingham House Manager
Assistant House Manager
Stephanie M. Paul
President’s Club Liaison
BACKSTAGE Todd Snow
Bill Brackett, III
Senior Marketing Assistant Direct Response A.E. Group Sales Representative Marketing Projects Specialist
Digital Media Specialist
House Carpenter House Electrician
House Sound Engineer Business Agent and Head Props
PROVIDENCE PERFORMING ARTS CENTER
220 Weybosset Street, Providence, RI 02903
Cover photo by Sean Pavone / Back cover photo by Shane Photography