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Diablo Ballet, Walnut Creek CA


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#1 2 Left Feet

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Posted 20 August 2002 - 07:00 AM

For any of you in the bay area, the Diablo Ballet issued a press release yesterday. They face a severe budget short fall that could cause them to cease operation by September 15th. They need to raise $150,000 immediately to cover expenses. This is a company that was quickly establishing an international reputation. For more information or to find out how to make doantions, go to: Http:/Criticaldance.com/diabloballet/

#2 Alexandra

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Posted 20 August 2002 - 08:35 AM

Thanks for posting this, Ed. I hope some of our Bay Area visitors will see it. San Francisco has such a rich and diverse dance scene, and one of the reasons is because there are so many small companies like this one. $150,000 is not insurmountable -- I hope they make it.

#3 piccolo

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Posted 21 August 2002 - 08:02 AM

Just for the record, I saw Diablo Ballet when they toured through San Diego. What a wonderful troupe! Interesting & varied choreography, beautifully trained dancers, a great evening. I wish more people had come to this regional performance. Good luck to them!

#4 MJ

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Posted 24 August 2002 - 09:29 PM

I used to work for a company HQ'd in Walnut Creek, nice town. Sad to see a company go under. Hopefully they will return under a new name.
Small Companies have to be very careful with expenses, I recall the Hartford Ballet had a lot of difficulties with expenses and big plans. Every Company wants to tour, but it often will bankrupt the organizer.
Besides Nut******r (still too early to say the N word) Few ballets draw enough to pay for themselves. Even the classics can cost a fortune to stage.
Was the Walnut creek community behind the company? Walnut creek is a BART ride away from SF and the cultural institutions there.

MJ

#5 Alexandra

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Posted 25 August 2002 - 11:40 AM

Often very small companies have a very small, but loudly devoted, following. I don't know whether that's so in this case -- but I'm sure that there is a lot of competition for funding in the Bay area.

#6 BalletNut

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Posted 25 August 2002 - 07:06 PM

Yes, there certainly is, but I don't want to blame the diversity of the Bay Area dance scene, or the other arts. I think competition for funds is especially fierce right now because there is not as much money being pumped into the arts as there should be. A major contributing factor to all of this is the demise of the dot-com noveau riche, whose giant incomes helped to fund the arts. Another, of course, is the terror attacks, when everyone was giving all of their extra money to the Red Cross and other charities, and therefore had very little to give to other causes, including the arts.

#7 2 Left Feet

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Posted 29 August 2002 - 07:32 AM

Latest word I got on fundraising attempts was they had succeeded in raising $10,000. They also had a committment from a local company to match it with a $15,000 donation if they were able to reach $15,000 on their own. Lets hope. I also undersand they're trying to get a grant from the City of Walnut Creek to cover their debts.

Now I'm hearing of other places going under. It's not ballet, but in a sign of the times a long established Santa Barbara musical theater group called it quits this week. I'm sure there's more to come.

I tell you. Not that this is the problem here, but I think people got complacent in the 90's. Cash was so easy to find for arts organizations, people were practically throwing it at them. Now when times are tough, I don't think development directors know how to go looking for it when they need money. Used to be it took a lot of time and effort to network, grow interest in a company or art form, then begin to reap the financial benefits. I think some companies are about to learn hard lessons simply because they don't know how to work hard to get the money they need.

Just my thoughts.

#8 2 Left Feet

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Posted 01 September 2002 - 09:18 AM

Another update: As of Friday, the company has been able to raise $60,000 toward keeping the doors open. Things are looking up.

#9 Renee Renouf

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Posted 07 September 2002 - 07:58 PM

I learned this afternoon, from a reliable source,
that Diablo Ballet's fundraising had reached the $73,000 level, just under half that is needed to continued, with approximately a week left to the September 15 deadline the Board had set to raise the funds. Lauren Jonas, the artistic director, remarked in the initial appeal that if Contra Costa residents gave a dollar for every year they had lived in the area that there would be no problem. Ten or twenty dollars a person could make all the difference, and I am certain five dollars would be cheerfully accepted as well.

#10 Alexandra

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Posted 07 September 2002 - 09:05 PM

Thanks, Renee and Ed, for keeping us up to date on this. There is hope. Ballet Arizona faced a similar crisis two years ago -- the board gave them only one week to raise the money, and they did it. There was a good side benefit, too, because they got a lot of publicity, and the community pulled together to help.

#11 Brioche

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Posted 09 September 2002 - 11:42 AM

73K? Wouldn't that be nice? With all due respect it's more in the $62,000 range. We've got quite a ways to go!

The support has been tremendous and we've received donations from arts lovers all over the globe.

For a very special story please go to News/September 9, and read about Ron Huxley, an angel if there ever was one.

Best,
David Hicks
Marketing Manager
Diablo Ballet

PS: I'm looking forward to the publication of Alexandra's book. What a terrific subject she was able to research and write about!

#12 Brioche

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Posted 09 September 2002 - 04:25 PM

We're at $67,210.00

David Hicks
Marketing Manager
Diablo Ballet

#13 Alexandra

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Posted 09 September 2002 - 08:00 PM

Thanks for the update, Brioche. Please keep us informed.

#14 Brioche

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Posted 09 September 2002 - 08:48 PM

Well, I'm happy to say that at the end of the day - with phoned in pledges and an anonymous donation of $30,000 we ended at $98,210.00

Perhaps the light at the end of the tunnel is starting to shimmer through?

David Hicks
Marketing Manager
Diablo Ballet

#15 Renee Renouf

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Posted 10 September 2002 - 07:50 AM

That's Terrific, David! With five more days to
go, you just may do it!


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