The Evanston 2nd Act Players will be suspending operations for the remainder of 2021.
This follows what for us was a devastating development last week – the church where we have performed since 2016 said we cannot do any in-person shows there this winter.
Rather than have any activities in its theater area this year, it has decided to take on a major upgrade to its heating and air conditioning systems to increase airflow throughout its complex of buildings to comply with standards recommended because of Covid. It’s unclear whether that project will be done by next spring when we would be starting our 2022 season, so next year is a question mark at the moment as well.
We considered renting other spaces. But in checking, we found the costs would be considerably higher. Given all the unknowns around doing live theater this fall, we did not think it prudent to take on such costs.
We also considered doing more online shows, but attendance for those has been declining and our feeling is that our traditional audience is not interested in such shows.
We’ve also spent the past year trying to expand our board and its fund-raising capabilities, reaching out to a wide range of people in our area who have been involved with theaters and the arts in the past.
But we were unsuccessful in that effort. Without added help at the top, the prospect of continuing was extremely daunting.
Thank you to everyone who has acted with us, directed with us, stage-managed with us, helped us fund-raise, helped us in so many ways. Thank you to all the playwrights we have had the pleasure of working with.
And thank you to everyone who has bought tickets to see our shows, starting with our first production back in 2013. It has been an amazing eight and a half years of creative struggle and creative accomplishments.