We are Bristol Riverside Theatre.
Every day at the Theatre, we are reminded of how important – how gloriously important – residents from Bristol and its surrounding communities are to what we do.
There is no musical without audience members laughing, crying, singing.
There is no high-quality programming, without cheerleading, word-of-mouth sharing, financial support from committed and generous friends like you.
The fact is: There is no Bristol Riverside Theatre without you.
Today, our Bristol Riverside Theatre is being tested.
The Coronavirus, is spreading. This means that Bristol Riverside Theatre has had to make necessary changes for your safety, and for the safety of everyone.
On March 14, we made the decision to postpone the remainder of the run of CABARET. This is heart-breaking, because we are well aware that this postponement will likely extend. And worse: we may ultimately have to cancel.
I cannot stress enough to you what a challenging moment this is for us.
As you know, CABARET is one of the most famous and beloved musicals in the American musical theatre pantheon. It’s also one of the most elaborate and expensive productions in our history.
When Bristol Riverside Theatre programs a musical of this fame and magnitude, we confidently project significant income from ticket sales. The Coronavirus has, in a matter of days, disrupted this balance.
Without ticket revenue for this signature production of our season, we find ourselves facing a substantial financial shortfall.
Today, I am writing to you with a request…and with a promise.
Let’s start with the promise. Bristol Riverside Theatre is not going anywhere. We are committed to weathering this storm and emerging on the other side of it resolute, determined, strong.
You can count on us delivering on that promise.
But in order to do so, we need your help.
If you are anything like me, you are reading this letter at home, trying to adapt to life without regular contact with friends, family members, work colleagues.
You’re also probably asking yourself what truly matters to you in life, and what you are going to need once this threat subsides.
I can tell you…you matter to Bristol Riverside Theatre. When this virus passes, we are going to need special places to come together to celebrate our shared humanity.
Bristol Riverside Theatre will be that special place…for you and so many.
So please, make a gift to help ensure the Theatre’s financial health so that we can be here for you on the other side of this.
Each year, when Keith and I sit down together to program a season, we immediately think of you. What plays will resonate with our community? What musicals will reach your heart and have you leaving the Theatre singing with joy? What new work will inspire you to think differently about people and our world?
Today, we are asking you to be here for us. We know we can count on you.
In good health and with deep gratitude,
Susan D. Atkinson
P.S. I cannot underscore enough the severity of the moment.
We depend on you. Your gift today makes a post-Coronavirus Bristol Riverside Theatre possible. Thank you for being as generous as you can.
For more information on how to prevent the spread of illness, refer to the World Health Organization’s advice for the public. If you are a Pennsylvania resident and are experiencing symptoms or believe you have been exposed to the virus, call 1-877-PA-HEALTH.