Mixed Blood Theatre’s 40th Anniversary season started off with tremendous energy and optimism. Along with the launch of the Theatre’s first ever Major Gifts Campaign and exciting renovations to the Firehouse, MBT introduced WD40, its wildly-named anniversary season, to invite guests into the next decade. The year kicked off well, and then there were some tougher times. While Mixed Blood holds predictable unpredictability as one of its core values, it is no secret that this season’s unpredictability threw our team for a loop now and again. As the season nears its close, the Mixed Blood team has earned some balance and perspective; in addition to substantial successes, we’ve also faced some significant challenges.
A shift in programming disappointed some of our guests, but ultimately opened Mixed Blood’s doors to great opportunity. With its final production of the season, Charm, the Theatre became a home for a timely, heartfelt and important story about an African American trans woman in her 60’s who teaches an etiquette class to trans youth experiencing homelessness. Mixed Blood proudly became the first theatre to produce Charm with 100% authenticity, welcoming trans artists to the Firehouse and engaging in important and relevant dialogue with audiences.
The joys of producing Charm were met with the sad cancellation of the 40th anniversary gala Revelry: A Red-Tie Affair. Without this celebration, Mixed Blood now finds itself in an unfamiliar financial situation. A balanced budget and fiscal responsibility has been Mixed Blood’s calling card for its 40 years; each season, financials are pored over down to the penny to ensure Radical Hospitality, pluralistic programming and a vision of theatre access continue to have a home in the firehouse. With the fiscal year coming to a close June 30, the Theatre is facing a deficit. Friends, if you are able, every penny will make a substantial difference in these final 2 weeks. Please consider a gift before June 30 in the name of 40 years of triumphs and defeats, in support of brave storytelling and Radical Hospitality-driven theatre access, in honor of the thousands of artists who have spoken their truths and the hundreds of thousands of audience members who have heard them.
We thank you for joining Mixed Blood on this 40-year journey, and we all look enthusiastically forward to 2017. Artistic Director Jack Reuler promises a 2016-2017 season announcement is coming soon and that it will have been worth the wait!
The next 40 starts NOW; thank you for leading the charge.