A $25,000 Coachella Valley Spotlight grant from the H.N. and Frances C. Berger Foundation will help upgrade the Palm Canyon Theatre’s 20-year-old equipment. The award came just as the theatre is celebrating its 20th anniversary season.
“This generous gift from the H.N. and Frances C. Berger Foundation is coming at a wonderful time,” said Se Layne, co-artistic director of the Palm Canyon Theatre (PCT). “We plan to purchase new lighting and backstage monitoring systems. This means we can start a new era with current technology, allowing us to give our young actors a true real-world experience.”
The Palm Canyon Theatre incorporates education into every production, hiring professionals as needed to teach aspiring performers and technical crews specialized skills. The regional repertory theater is dedicated to the education of live stage production and the enrichment of the greater Palm Springs community and its visitors. PCT produces about 13 Broadway musicals and classic plays each year, plus offers a children’s theatre camp and production. Auditions are called several times a year for people of all experience levels.
“Each season, the Palm Canyon Theatre produces an ambitious lineup on a limited budget,” said Catharine Reed, Program Director for the H.N. and Frances C. Berger Foundation. “We are happy to give this grant, which will benefit every show, talent and crew there for many seasons to come.”
The Palm Canyon Theatre was founded by members of the Layne Family; each has a professional theatre background. After extensive tenant renovations to the historic Frances S. Stevens School, the Palm Canyon Theatre opened its doors in September 1997. PCT has a small staff and about 250 volunteers, which include on-stage and off-stage talent, ushers, summer camp counselors, and more.
“When looking at need in a community, it’s sometimes easy for people to overlook the arts and support causes that appear more essential, but I’m proud of the CBS Local 2 Advisory Board for recognizing nonprofit organizations, like the Palm Canyon Theatre, that help strengthen our communities in a variety of ways,” said Mike Stutz, General Manager of Gulf California Broadcast Company, which owns and operates CBS Local 2.
Along with the grant, Palm Canyon Theatre was featured on CBS Local 2’s “Eye on the Desert,” in public service announcements and on the cbslocal2.com website throughout the month of February. The Palm Canyon Theatre is located at 538 North Palm Canyon Dr., Palm Springs. For more information call 760-323-5123 or visit www.palmcanyontheatre.org.
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