This holiday season, The Center for the Arts is celebrating our first full year of programs in our newly renovated venue. The Center continues to grow and adapt its programming to meet the needs of this community. This past year The Center presented: world-renowned acts on the main stage in The Marisa Funk Theater, the return of California WorldFest, the launch of the Main Stage Playmakers Children’s Theater Company, and the expansion of The Center’s afterschool programs that serve children and adults.
Despite the many successes of the past year, The Center and arts institutions throughout the country are still in recovery from two years of closures due to COVID. Audiences have yet to return to pre-pandemic levels. Many say they don’t go out as much as they did pre-pandemic, and many continue to feel unsafe in a crowded theater. The Center’s current attendance is down by 20% which is having a significant financial impact on The Center.
The post-COVID world has been difficult for theaters and arts venues. A recent study by TRG Arts found ticket sales to be down 40 percent nationwide in the 2021-22 season. This decline in revenue combined with rising operating costs means many arts organizations are struggling to stay afloat. Radically increased travel, hotel, and food costs have also led to a 28% increase in artist fees at The Center.