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It’s time to bring down the curtain. For now.
Off Center for the Dramatic Arts is celebrating ten years of being a home and haven for independent performance creators in Burlington and Vermont. This has been a decade of world premiere plays, classical revivals, splashy little musicals, killer comedy, intense solo work and challenging performance art on the cutting edge. We are proud to carve out a special little gathering place for Vermonters to take creative risks and develop our homegrown theatre art and artists.
We were hoping to get together have a big celebration - a decade in operation is a major milestone in the arts. Unfortunately, world events are interfering with both our ability to celebrate and our ability to gather. The COVID-19 pandemic makes physically being together indoors to sing and shout and dance dangerous, for both our audiences and our artists. The Off Center stage has been dark since late March, and we cannot predict when we will be able to return.
For this reason, after extensive community consultation, the Off Center Board of Directors has voted to take an intermission. We will be leaving our current space at the end of July. Our equipment will be stored and our regular programming will pause. We will wait patiently offstage for the cue to start our next act.
During this intermission, we will revive our search for a suitable local space to build the next Off Center. We have a good track record of transforming empty rooms into professional performance spaces, and are optimistic in our collective ability to emerge from this crisis stronger with a new home and vision to support performance in Vermont. When live indoor performance is once again possible, we will make sure that our entire community can access affordable equipped performance and creation space.
We want Vermont performing artists to take artistic risks, not health ones. We want our audiences to feel safe sharing the electricity of being in the room where the show happens, experiencing live stories and art together.
If you are interested to volunteer in the next few weeks to help with the move to storage, if you have secure storage space you would like to offer, or if you have an idea for a raw space we should consider for the next Off Center stage, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We are an all-volunteer 501(c)3 non-profit, and we run on the passion and generosity of your help.
Thank you to everyone for supporting Off Center these past ten years. It is our community, our audiences and our artists that make the hard work of maintaining an accessible theatre venue a joy. We can’t wait to see what will happen next.
In health and hope,
Off Center for the Dramatic Arts
Off Center for the Dramatic Arts is supported in part by the Vermont Arts Council and the National Endowment for the Arts