Imagine Maine without Maine State Music Theatre. It’s not hard because, like all our sister institutions, we are dark this summer. MSMT was set to sell 75,000 tickets in 12 weeks; this would have generated $14 million for local businesses. The productions we cancelled would have inspired people to ponder social questions, to laugh, cry, and to have fun.

MSMT makes 80% of our income during these 12 weeks. After the 2020 cancellation, many patrons donated their tickets, and some made additional gifts. But even after donations, with zero income this year, we face a large deficit. This problem is amplified because we live and work in a state that does not have large reserves. So we are at the mercy of our patrons and the federal government.

Many of our charitable gifts come from summer folks. And guess what? These patrons are not coming to Maine this year. And a Zoom call or letter is not as effective as personal contact. That leaves one option: the federal government. Write your congressional delegation and tell them to help us because without assistance, we will be limping badly toward next season. Our large-scale Broadway-style productions take months to plan and create, and the budgets needed to make these happen must be implemented soon. Pressure your senators and representatives to come to our aid.

The arts and especially our brand of musical theater will be essential to the healing of our souls next summer. The health of any community is commensurate with the health of the arts in that community. The arts will be able to bridge the gap between COVID and the “new normal.” But they must be kept alive to do so.

Support the arts in the Maine. Maine State Music Theatre needs you.


Curt Dale Clark

artistic director
Maine State Music Theatre

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