Shakespeare Santa Cruz is on the verge of permanent shutdown. The 27 year old company is one of the countries best, and provides Santa Cruz and the community with culturally rich artistic performances to attend and enjoy.
The budget cuts inflicted upon the University of California system have required reductions of 1.1 million to the Arts Division, where Shakespeare Santa Cruz resides. This huge amount is in addition to previous cuts already made this year.
An urgent message posted to their website reads: “Our challenge is simply put – raise $300,000 in a week’s time or cease to exist. Talk about “to be or not to be”? The question is, can you help? Yes you can. Click here to donate immediately, or keep reading to get further energized! Do it NOW or forever hold your peace.
The drop dead date for their fundraising effort is December 22, 2008, and as of December 18th, they have raised $238,000.
While many may see giving to the arts in these economic times as an unaffordable luxury, what would our community be without art and culture? I wouldn’t like to face that alternative.
And it’s not just Shakespeare Santa Cruz that’s facing crisis. Los Angeles’ Museum of Contemporary Art is seeking large cash infusions or a possible merger with another institution to keep their doors open. MOCA has been in a chronically underfunded position for some time, which has only been amplified by the current national crisis.
Kriston Capps, of the UK Guardian wrote recently about the effect the economic crisis is having on the global art world. He suggests that there is no clear indication of who might step in to support it during this bumpy patch. And in the US, the arts depend enormously on private money.
If we care about keeping the Arts (of any kind) in our community, now is the time to step in and support our favorite organizations by any means we can. And remember, cash is always King.