Posts Tagged ‘Economy’

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Laughter is the Best Medicine — And We Need It

June 19, 2009

Every day patrons give us their feedback as to what types of artists we should book at the State Theatre. And leading the pack right now, more than ever, are comedians. Why is that, you ask? Well, it’s simple, times are crappy and people want to laugh (and believe me, so do us arts folks). Comedians help us to lighten up and forget, even for just an hour or so, the reality of our situations. So, with that said, you asked for comedy and we have answered. This fall, we have scheduled 3 comedians, all with their own brand of comedy: Lewis Black, Joy Behar, and Jim Gaffigan.

So, if you need a laugh, come and visit us at the State or if you want to laugh RIGHT NOW, check out Jim Gaffigan’s YouTube page. Either way, treat yourself and find time to laugh…you know you want to…

The State Theatre is located at 15 Livingston Avenue in New Brunswick, NJ. For information or to purchase tickets call 732-246-SHOW(7469) or visit http://www.statetheatrenj.org/. Check us out on Twitter, Facebook, and Myspace.

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Mission and Purpose

January 28, 2009

In January each year, I attend several arts conferences, in particular the annual gathering of the International Society for the Performing Arts. Within the context of a world economy in chaos, it was a good time to take stock of what we do and how we serve our respective constituencies. In a time of economic upheaval, the most difficult thing an arts institution can do is to stay on mission. It is tempting to take the low road—to pick the low hanging fruit—when the going gets difficult. The pop culture beckons and the allure of easy money intrigues even the purist.

Our mission at the State Theatre clearly states that we exist to enrich the lives of people and to contribute to a vital urban environment. We are committed to excellence in the performing arts, to providing an arts education program that informs and builds audiences, and to adding to the vibrancy of a thriving city.

While arts centers and theaters play a major role in the economic development of a city, the primary outcomes of the arts experiences we offer are not economic. Obviously, economic impact is a by-product of our attendance, but it is not a result of the theater experience.

The theatre’s primary purpose is to transform individuals and our community through the artists and arts experiences that we present. We should be raising awareness of ourselves, the human condition, and of the world in which we live. As Alan Brown and Jennifer Novak so well state in a study, Assessing the Intrinsic Impacts of a Live Performance:

“The true impact of performing arts experiences is what happens to individual members when the lights go down and the artist takes the stage—and, moreover, cumulative benefits to individuals, families and communities of having those experiences available night after night, year after year.”

Right now, times are very tough. But we will get through it. The earth’s path around the sun has not changed nor the moon’s path around earth. And so we keep our eye on that goal which has guided artists since time began which is to celebrate our creativity and to shed light on the human condition which we do nightly through humor, pathos, and beauty.

—Wes Brustad, State Theatre President & CEO

The State Theatre is located at 15 Livingston Avenue in New Brunswick, NJ. For information or to purchase tickets call 732-246-SHOW(7469) or visit http://www.statetheatrenj.org/.

Check us out on Twitter, Facebook, and Myspace.

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Plumbing problems are the least of our worries

January 20, 2009

There are lots of things to worry about as a nonprofit performing arts center in the packed arts community of New Jersey in today’s economy, and they are challenges that we face every day. However, it was not any of those things that effected the work flow of State Theatre employees today. Today, the State Theatre adminstration staff was blindsided by a backed up sewer that resulted in the closing of all the bathrooms in the building. You may or may not know this, but the State Theatre adminstration building is NOT in the theater. The offices are actually located in the same building as the George Street Playhouse (directly above the stage to be exact). So, that means, if we have to use the bathroom, we need to bundle up (and brave the 16 degree weather) and go next door to the theater. Now, it’s not the end of the world and the problem will be fixed soon enough. But when things are already running along the rough side (and in the theater world, they are), it hurts to let go of the things that you took for granted. So, when we lose sight and forget about the little comforts that we still have, we need to wake up, bundle up, and be thankful that we have a theater that’s up and running (complete with indoor plumbing) because not everyone is so lucky right now.

The State Theatre is located at 15 Livingston Avenue in New Brunswick, NJ. For information or to purchase tickets call 732-246-SHOW(7469) or visit http://www.statetheatrenj.org/.

Check us out on Twitter, Facebook, and Myspace.