May 29, 2012
For more information, contact Jason Cannon at 573-364-9523 or Luci Flaim at 573-265-2993
Ozark Actors Theatre creates endowment fund with MRCF
ROLLA — Ozark Actors Theatre (OAT) has established an endowment fund with the Meramec Regional Community Foundation (MRCF) through the Community Foundation of the Ozarks. Contributions from this fund will be used for permanent sustainment of the non-profit organization’s operations.
“The endowment fund is part of our year-long silver anniversary celebration. Our first quarter century has been incredible, and we want to ensure that OAT is around for another quarter century of providing outstanding, live, professional theatre to our community,” said OAT Producing Artistic Director Jason Cannon.
Cannon, who studied theatre in both undergraduate and graduate school, has been a freelance theatre artist and educator since 1998. He explained that generating income and creating revenue for OAT is a constant struggle as a non-profit organization.
“We have wonderful support from the community, public and private, individual and corporate, but an endowment fund would provide OAT with a steady, reliable source of income, and give people a chance to give a gift that will never stop growing,” noted Cannon.
By establishing the fund, OAT would find stability, consistency and reliability, Cannon continued.
OAT was founded in 1988 by a group of artists who wanted to provide the Rolla community with professional performing arts, Cannon said.
“We have had a long relationship with Actors' Equity Association, the union of professional actors and stage managers, and we bring in artists from around the country.
“We are a non-profit organization, with a board of directors made up of incredible community volunteers. We have other terrific volunteers who run our box office and house management, and who take care of our facility. We do own our building, and we present a wide range of musicals, dramas, and comedies.
“We also recently added a performing arts series, that lets us present an even wider range of performing arts such as comedy, cabaret, magic, choral music and jazz bands. Plus we have OAT Jr., our education program that offers drama camps and youth productions,” Cannon said.
OAT’s main stage is a place where local actors get to work along side professionals from around the country, Cannon noted.
“This mingling of local and national talent is rare and provides incredible education and training,” Cannon said.
With its endowment fund established, OAT has the opportunity to gain consistent support from local leaders and donors.
“OAT has aggressively expanded its programming in the last year and wants to continue bringing the best and most professional live theatre and performing arts to our community. Our slogan is ‘Enhancing Our Community Through Inspired Performance.’ Thankfully, there is never a shortage of inspiration among our actors, directors, and designers, but financial support for non-profit arts organizations is always tricky.
“OAT would love to become less dependent on grants and establish some larger, more reliable and consistent revenue streams to free up time for audience development, education, and programming,” Cannon noted.
Persons wishing to learn more about OAT or wanting to make a contribution to its endowment fund can contact Cannon at 573-364-9523 x102 or by email at Jason@ozarkactorstheatre.org.
For more information on MRCF, contact Luci Flaim at MRPC at email@example.com or call 573-265-2993.