The Playgoer: Roundabout Woes

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Monday, October 05, 2009

Roundabout Woes

Todd Haimes is being up front about his company's financial insecurities:

The Roundabout Theater Co., which operates four venues, including the American Airlines Theater in Times Square, reported at a Crain's New York Business arts conference on Wednesday that its 10-year sponsorship contract with the airline expires in six months and may not be renewed. This comes as it deals with other funding woes.

“We are hoping they'll renew. We need the money,” said Todd Haimes, artistic director of Roundabout. “It's been a good relationship, but their business is terrible right now and we don't know what they'll decide.”

Well if there's one good thing that could come out of this recession theatrically speaking, it would be the relief of no longer having to say the words "American Airlines Theatre."

(It's hardly a good thing for the Roundabout when the mere mention of the name gets laughs from all quarters. I remember Kyle McLaughlin going on The Daily Show to promote The Caretaker, and before he could say anything about Pinter's bleak comic masterpiece, Jon Stewart wouldn't let get him past " the American Airlines Theatre" so amused was he.)

As for their specific money problems:

Roundabout is simultaneously dealing with a drop in its annual membership subscriptions, which cost between $300 and $400 a year, and individual donations. Over the past year, Mr. Haimes has been forced to reduce the size of his staff, cut salaries and pension contributions.

Um, you know what may be causing that drop in your subscriptions? The fact that they're "between $300 and $400 a year"!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

in order to feel any sympathy for this litany of struggling 'major' nonprofits i'm going to need the todd haimeses of the world to disclose their salaries. because if what i'm told anecdotally is true -- that ad's at these nonprofits often make upwards of 300k -- then they need a long look in the mirror. the wage divide between theater artists and theater management is very close to a scandal.