A very welcome email blast went out this week, apprising longtime friends and fans of Southern California’s most revered Gilbert & Sullivan troupe of some upcoming changes. After the death of founder Richard Sheldon in 2017, OALC has been adrift as they searched for next steps and the right leader. But with well-established theater guy Alan Freeman in tow, there is plenty of reason for optimism.
Email release follows
Greetings to all of you, our faithful audience and donors. We have missed performing for you and are very much looking forward to reconnecting in 2019!
The biggest news is that, after many years of planning and preparation, we have found the opportunity to add two important new people to our team.
Let me introduce you…
Alan Freeman is well-known to many people in Southern California. He was the Artistic Director of the Occidental Theater Festival and taught in the Theater Department at Occidental College. He is a director, writer, producer, and actor—and we are proud to announce that he is now the Artistic Director of Opera A La Carte.
Alan knows the Gilbert & Sullivan canon deeply, having either performed in, directed, or produced all but one of the G&S repertoire (the Grand Duke being the sole hold out). He is a visionary who wants to grow Opera A La Carte into a fully professionalized company, with simple, bold productions and competitive pay for our performers and designers. And he is on fire about leading the artistic path of Opera A La Carte into some new territory while staying absolutely committed to preserving the soul and intent of the original works.
We are also delighted to announce the addition of David Palmer to our board of directors. David’s involvement with the company goes back many decades. As General Manager of the Soka Performing Arts Center and as Theatre Manager for the Shannon Center at Whittier College, David worked with the company many times and enjoyed a deep friendship with our founder, Richard Sheldon. With his background in production, presentation, and finance, plus his deep love of the repertoire, David brings a powerful combination of both expertise and wisdom to the board.
We are now embarking on looking towards the immediate future as well as crafting a five year plan with our new team members. For us to succeed and survive, we need to look at our future from both a business and an artistic point of view. As we relaunch this company, every step of our journey forward is intentional and part of a larger strategy.
For 2019, we are planning a coming out event, celebrating the grand (re)birth of the company! This event will include a performance, food, the reuniting of old friends, and a chance for you to meet our team. We will send out specifics as we nail down details, but we are thrilled to perform for you again as we unveil our new ideas.
Our new fully realized vision will require deep, financial stability. Please consider an end of year gift to help us keep the doors open as we embark on this great good work. Checks may be sent to our address, or donations may be made online at http://operaalacarte.org/donate/. All donations are tax deductible.
Thank you so much! We could not have gotten this far without your ongoing help and support. As always, your generosity is deeply appreciated as we strive to keep this endearing repertoire alive.