Virtual fundraising telethon unites DMV community theatres, prominent personalities
In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, community theatre companies in the Washington, DC metropolitan area will come together July 17-18 to raise crucial funds via a live streamed telethon. Participating companies hail from localities throughout the greater Capital region, all representing a vitally important sector of the arts scene in and around the area.
Most community theatres operate on shoestring budgets as nonprofit entities with artistic and social mission statements. Without the ability to produce live theatre for audiences, critical revenue from ticket sales has dried up for many companies, even as their volunteers stand by, ready to share their talents with the communities they love.
The community theatre sector showcases the incredible talent and creativity of the region as it strives to make performances affordable and accessible to everyone, keeping ticket prices low and relying on donations to succeed. In the midst of conversations about how best to move forward in light of the pandemic, Reston Community Players, one of the area’s most established community theatre companies, saw an opportunity to help its peers during this difficult time.
“Theatre companies throughout our area have been hit hard by the pandemic, with some companies having to cancel productions mere hours before opening night,” said Jolene Vettese, president of Reston Community Players, the company spearheading the Community Theatre Thrives telethon. “These companies operate with the time and talents of thousands of volunteers to produce hundreds of high-quality shows each year. We thought a live streamed telethon would be a wonderful way to be able to come together virtually, share the talent of the region and help ensure that community theatre continues to thrive in the capital region for years to come. We need theatre in our communities, and right now, community theatre needs us.”
Fourteen community theatres from around the greater DC region will participate in the telethon, sharing performances and messages from their members with viewers. The telethon seeks to raise awareness of the incredible passion, talent, generosity, and dedication of the volunteers who make community theatre in the DC Metro region possible and will feature the voices of prominent members of the theatre industry who support community theatre in all its forms.
Companies participating in the Community Theatre Thrives telethon include:
- Annapolis Summer Garden Theatre – Annapolis, MD
- The Arlington Players – Arlington, VA
- The City of Fairfax Theatre Company – Fairfax, VA
- The Colonial Players of Annapolis – Annapolis, MD
- The Hard Bargain Players – Accokeek, MD
- Kensington Arts Theatre – Kensington, MD
- Laurel Mill Playhouse – Laurel, MD
- Port Tobacco Players – La Plata, MD
- Prince William Little Theatre – Manassas, VA
- Reston Community Players – Reston, VA
- Rockville Little Theatre – Rockville, MD
- Sterling Playmakers – Sterling, VA
- Silver Spring Stage – Silver Spring, MD
- Victorian Lyric Opera Company – Rockville, MD
The event will take place on https://theatrethrives.org and on YouTube and will begin at 6:30 p.m. on July 17 and again all day on July 18. Donations will be accepted online and by phone at 833-615-0922.