My Nonprofit Reviews
Review for Commonweal Theatre Company, Lanesboro, MN, USA
The Commonweal Theatre has a resident ensemble – artists, like me, who have made a long-term commitment to stay with the company, and in my case that’s been 21 years. We contribute to the community as taxpayers, shoppers, volunteers, area board members, and local voters. We develop friendships with many audience members and come to think of them as family. Most importantly for me -- and one reason why I'm a sustaining donor -- the Commonweal allows us to spend a life in the theatre and have a stable family life as well, away from the typical stresses faced by most freelancers who must travel from job to job, always anxious about where to find their next paychecks. All this is possible because of the company’s artist-administrator model, giving us a steady income as we balance both artistic and administrative duties to make our small nonprofit -- now in its 31st season -- thrive. It’s an unusual model and one I think could help other small theatres succeed.
Review for Artspace Projects Inc, Minneapolis, MN, USA
In the 1980s my wife and I were both heavily involved in the arts scene in Saint Paul, MN in several ways. I first learned of Artspace through her job with the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council and discovered an organization that was transforming warehouse space downtown into work and living spaces for visual artists. I became even more aware of this when I started working for the Saint Paul Department of Planning and Economic Development where one of my colleagues was assigned to helping develop artist spaces. Later, I managed the Saint Paul portion of the Minneapolis-Saint Paul Home Tour, and helped place a new artist housing project created by this organization as a unique stop on the tour. All the while, I was acting in the evenings at Park Square Theatre which consulted with Artspace several times as it gradually expanded its performing space to different venues. I'm amazed and very pleased this organization -- which started as simply a way to help artists through the technical maze of rehabilitating spaces into viable studios and homes -- is now working on a national scale to provide infrastructure for the arts and revitalization for many communities.
What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...
Its commitment to artists as important to the economic and cultural vitality of communities
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