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2017 Gala Success!

November 16, 2017

Russell J. Young

On Sunday evening 180 supporters and friends of the arts came out in their woolly finest to celebrate 35 years of intimate, provocative theatre and the making of a new work of art at the 2017 gala Magellanica: Journey to the Center of the Glacier.

With a winter wonderland as the backdrop, we exceeded our goal and raised over $126,000 in support of new, innovative work and our Portland family of local talent. Playwright E.M. Lewis and the cast of Magellanica provided highlights and insights into the epic play, offering a glimpse into the humor, the science, and the personal and the political intrigue that lies ahead.

We were thrilled by the many guests who donned fuzzy hats, parkas and even a pick ax or two, to get into the spirit of arctic exploration. The evening was made more fun, and delicious, with on-theme food by Artemis Catering, including a desert covered in its very own Aurora Australis. And, of course, our generous sponsors Dark Horse Wine, Deschutes Brewery and Illy Coffee made the night even more festive before we turned up the volume of Dance Hall Days playing all our favorite ‘80s hit songs.

In addition to the outpouring of support and generosity in the room, Magellanica is also the recipient of two prestigious awards without which a work of this magnitude wouldn’t be possible: $75,000 from the Oregon Community Foundation Creative Heights Initiative and the play is the receipt of an Edgerton New Play award in the amount of $44,000 to fund the three additional weeks of rehearsal.

A look through Artists Rep’s 35-year production history shows once unknown plays by unknown playwrights that are now considered contemporary classics. Thirty-five years amounts to more than 250 plays and nearly 10,000 performances. In a few weeks we start rehearsals for Magellanica, and again embark on a World Premiere that  has the potential to join the canon of great American plays. We are grateful to be the first to work on this ambitious, beautiful project with Oregon playwright E.M. Lewis.

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