PRESS RELEASE - FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
DATE: May 23, 2017
PR CONTACT: Michael Glicksman, firstname.lastname@example.org
PR CONTACT PHONE: 978-654-7555
BOX OFFICE: 978-654-4678
MERRIMACK REPERTORY THEATRE SURPASSES MATCHING CHALLENGE TO SECURE EDUCATION FUNDING
Historic matching challenge prompts $47,000 in microdonations during the run of hit musical “My 80-Year-Old Boyfriend”
Lowell, MA – Merrimack Repertory Theatre (MRT) has successfully raised $47,000 over the last month during performances of “My 80-Year-Old Boyfriend,” barreling past its goal of $35,000 which is being matched dollar-for-dollar by two anonymous donors. The campaign brings $82,000 in vital funds to the company’s education programs. It is the largest matching challenge grant in MRT’s history, and its success is a major milestone for the 38-year-old theatre company.
An Invested Audience
The $47,000 was raised in microdonations, small contributions by many individuals towards an ambitious goal. Much of it came in through collection boxes inside the theatre lobby following performances of “My 80-Year-Old Boyfriend,” the new musical that delighted Lowell audiences from April 26 through May 21. Charissa Bertels, star of “My 80-Year-Old Boyfriend,” played a significant role in the fundraising effort, directly asking audiences to contribute after every performance.
Says Artistic Director Sean Daniels, “It's a tribute to the donors and community we have here. This was our largest matching gift in the theatre's history, and our audience made sure we met and exceeded it."
Where the Money Will Go
The $82,000 raised in the campaign will support Merrimack Repertory Theatre’s two education programs: Student Matinees, which bring middle and high school students from across the region to see MRT shows, often giving students their first ever theatre experience; and Young Company, in which students create and perform original theatre pieces in the summer, then stay connected to the MRT community all year long through workshops and master classes with MRT’s visiting artists.
Merrimack Repertory Theatre (MRT) has been Merrimack Valley’s professional theatre company since 1979, and is an integral part of Lowell’s identity as the cultural heart of the region. MRT produces vibrant, contemporary plays that explore what it means to be alive today. A seven-show season runs from September through May in the intimate 279-seat Nancy L. Donahue Theatre. The company is known as a leader in producing new plays, especially world and regional premieres. MRT is one of 72 theaters nationwide (one of three in Massachusetts) with membership in LORT (the League of Resident Theatres).