2006 Arts Organizations Holiday Wishlists[Part_1]
Randy Stewart talks to local arts administrators about their "wish lists" this year, both practical things and "pie-in-the-sky."
I'm Randy Stewart for KSMU with Christmas wish-lists from Springfield's arts organizations. I asked local arts administrators to come up with their lists of wants and needs for their organizations, both practical and "pie-in-the-sky."
Bucky Bowman, master fundraiser for the arts through his agency, An Arts Patronage Initiative, starts us off with some "modest" wish-list requests...
BUCKY BOWMAN: First of all, I want to encourage all Springfieldians to come to a very historic production of "The Nutcracker" this year. Tickets are selling through the Landers Theatre like hotcakes. If you don't get in there and get 'em, you're going to miss out.
RANDY: You've already missed the first weekend as it is.
BUCKY: Right. What is historic about it: the Ballet and the Symphony are in collaboration and producing live music. The entire Symphony is performing; Springfield Regional Opera has a choir in the audience. It is going to be really a multi-assault on the senses.
RANDY: And there are three more performances, Friday and Saturday night the 22nd and 23rd both at 7:00pm, and Christmas Eve the 24th at 2:00pm, the final performance, and those are at the Landers Theatre. And you can call, as Bucky said, the Landers box office at 869-1334 for tickets.
BUCKY: My second item is: I sent out a general appeal about two months ago on behalf of the AIDS Foundation of the Ozarks, to produce the most beautiful, arts-oriented cookbook ever published in this city. I sent out an appeal for legendary cooks here in Springfield, including all the professional chefs--they're all sending me their finest recipes. How I want Springfieldians to help me on this is to send me recipes, particularly glorifying our ethnic diversity--for example, Middle Eastern countries, Hispanic/Latino... any recipe that reflects something which is singular and unique and wonderful, I want it! Please send those to: Bucky Bowman, The Creamery Arts Center, 411 N. Sherman Parkway, Springfield MO 65802.
--Third item on the list, another biggie don't ya know? It is the second annual Show Me Missouri International Film Festival, which is coming up February 21-25, 2007. And my next appeal is to invite people to become honorary patrons of that event at $1,000 the pop. Last year, the first Film Festival was a runaway success. We want to make it bigger and better this year, because it's going to be held in the magnificently restored Gillioz Theatre.
--My last one, Randy, I promise--four's the REAL biggie. Come July the 1st of 2007, the Creamery Arts Center will be totally filled: the Symphony will have moved in, and along with the Ballet, the Opera, the Symphony there, new areas in the west end of the building basement which are for the "rougher arts"--sculpture, ceramics, and glassblowing. The last thing that will get done is a very small arts library in the big warehouse; a new reception center that ultimately might be a ticketing agency for all Springfield arts organizations; in addition there will be two film-editing suites, so all the wonderful young filmmakers that flood the area and need to have this terribly expensive equipment, will find it at the Creamery. So, basically as of July 1, the Creamery is filled. I have a very "modest" request for $2 million--someone out there can give me two million dollars--to create, for example, the "Randy Stewart Pavilion" (Randy laughs), which would be a new wing, built onto the Creamery on the north side of the building, so that all of the other arts entities in Springfield could have a home there, and everything would be under one roof. It's a modest request, Randy!
RANDY: Addy McCord, Springfield Regional Arts Council Education Director, expanded a bit on Bucky's "modest" proposals, and added some immediate needs the Arts Council has at the Creamery.
ADDY McCORD: One of our main wishes is to pay back the loans that we already have, and to completely fund the Creamery so we're debt-free. You could put that in the "practical" and the "pie-in-the-sky" categories as well.
RANDY: Is it more difficult than it sounds?
ADDY: It is, it's very difficult. There are always naming opportunities for certain parts of the building, so if someone wanted to donate money towards a classroom, that would be "their" classroom.
In our "pie-in-the-sky" column: you know, some people call it a new "wing," some people call it "the annex," but it would be the newest addition onto the Creamery, and we're thinking that it would cost about $2 million to build. And that would accommodate more arts organizations, administrative offices, classrooms, computer labs, artists' studios, an expanded library. And that would just be great. As of now we are bursting at the seams--which is a GOOD problem to have!--but at some point we will run out of space, and we will need more space. So that is something that I would really like to see, and I'm hoping that, within another five or ten years, I can see that happen.
RANDY: How about some immediate things that people might be able to contribute to?
ADDY: Practical things? We have needs of computers and software for our office and an incubator office that will be for arts groups that don't need a huge area, they just need a computer and a phone for a couple of hours a week; also for the children's design labs.
Other needs, or wants I guess, would be:
--Hand tools--new hand tools for our set-design shop. That will be up and running the first of the year.
--New equipment for the costume fabrication studio.
--And of course, donations for operating funds are always a nice thing to have. So those are some immediate things that would be wonderful to have in the New Year. And, you know, we can always use sunshine for Arts Fest, and no ice for First Night, things like that!
RANDY: Beth Domann, Springfield Little Theatre Artistic Director, says the theater needs all kinds of little things... and one BIG thing.
BETH DOMANN: (chuckling) I'll tell you something we really, really need--and it's a little odd for us--it's a pallet jack! Yeah... little weird. We really need a pallet jack, so if anybody's got a pallet jack, and they're just thinking, "WHY do I have this??"... we would love to have it!
RANDY: Okay, why do you need it?
BETH: We need it, actually, to move our "Beauty and the Beast" costumes, because our costumes are located at the Creamery now, so off the loading dock and onto the trucks. So that would be a great help to do that.
RANDY: Okay, what else?
BETH: Folding chairs! We need folding chairs. I think we beat all of our folding chairs up in the rehearsal hall getting ready for "The Full Monty," for that one big number. So we need folding chairs pretty desperately.
--Electric pencil sharpeners.
BETH: Yeah, seriously, no joke! We use a LOT of pencils!
--Paint brushes, rollers... if you've got old paintbrushes and old rollers, don't know what to--bring 'em down! We go through those things, we really need them.
--Hand tools, if you've got any hand tools.
--Canvas drop-cloths that you use for painting.
--And of course, you know, the typical things like... a $5 million endowment! That would be wonderful... in any increment; you know, a dollar would be great. Every dollar helps.
RANDY: There is an endowment in place currently?
BETH: We do--with the Community Foundation, we have an endowment. We're trying to continue to build that.
RANDY: But you're wanting to build it up to $5 million.
BETH: Yeah! Wouldn't that be great? Then we could, you know, leave people along a little more! (Randy laughs) Everything helps. We do have a beautiful building, built in 1909, that does cost a lot to maintain. It is an expensive project.
RANDY: But right now, the main items on your wish-list were construction items, set construction and painting items and so on.
BETH: Right. For that, and for the Education program, and just stuff in the office, with pencil sharpeners, and rehearsal halls.
--Little cups, little bitty cups for our "Play in a Days" and that kind of stuff. We probably go through 200 of those in a day. And it all adds up. It's just weird little strange things that we need...
RANDY: You're needing stocking stuffers!
BETH: We do... and a pallet jack...
RANDY: And a pallet jack...and a five million dollar endowment! (Beth laughs)