My Nonprofit Reviews
Review for Globe of the Great Southwest Inc, Odessa, TX, USA
I have worked two stints for the Globe as an Equity Guest Artist for their annual Shakespeare Festival. It is a beautiful theatre, albeit underfunded and understaffed. The Artistic Director and Artist Manager are dedicated professionals who devote countless hours to the operation, wearing many hats, and have managed to stage some terrific work. For example, I have been privileged to see two fine King Lears at the Oregon and Utah Shakespeare Festivals, which are widely regarded as the top two Shakespeare festivals in the nation. Although the Globe has but a tiny fraction of those theatres' budgets and resources, in 2010 they were able to offer west Texas audiences Mikel MacDonald's rendering of Lear, which was every bit as fine a performance as what I'd seen on those more prestigious stages -- and that's saying something, because those performances were outstanding. (Obviously, the Globe can't compete with such powerhouses in top-to-bottom overall production quality, but that's a matter of dollars.)
Indeed, all of the professional actors, both Equity and non-Equity, whom I've worked with at the Globe were tremendously talented and hard-working. (That also holds true for some of the local volunteer performers.) Alas, the theatre needs more advertising and marketing in order to build and sustain a greater audience. Too many residents of the region have no way of discovering the high quality of what's right under their noses
I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...
the quality of the team they assemble for their annual Shakespeare Festival. If they could increase their funding to enable them to advertise on TV, it would be a huge boost. Likewise, if they had a budget that allowed them to offer some Equity Guest Artist contracts throughout the year, instead of just for their Shakespeare Festival, the quality of their work -- and reputation -- could continue to grow.
If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...
consider shifting the Shakespeare Festival to a slightly later date on the calendar, perhaps a month later, in order to (a) avoid competition with the Permian Fair, and (b) drum up interest (and attendance) from the adjoining community college. As it is now, the student body hasn't arrived yet while the productions are in rehearsal, and have barely settled in when the shows are up and running. Attracting these students would cultivate a YOUNG, and thus long-sustaining, audience.