December 2020 Update – State of the Theatre

December 2020 Update – State of the Theatre

December 2020

Dear MYACT families, friends, and community supporters:

We are writing to provide an update and status on our theatre operations.  

2020 started out normally with high expectations for a full year of productions, events, and growth.   Our first production “Catch A Falling Spy”, an original story set to contemporary music, was going to be our launch pad for another great season of shows.   Due to COVID-19 we were forced to cease performances and all operations in mid-March after only one weekend.

For the next several weeks we struggled, as did much of our community, to figure out how it would be allowable, safe, and feasible to continue operations.  It soon became evident that the entire 2020 season of productions and other events would likely need to be put on hold and then ultimately cancelled.  Summer Camp, Paint Nights, Fall and Winter productions and other revenue generating events we had planned were all ultimately cancelled

There are three areas we would like to update you on.  


We began the year with about $12,000 in our accounts.  The 2020 operating budget established at the beginning of the year was approximately $50,000.  Of that amount, $26,000 was for production expenses like music rights, sets, costuming, director stipends, and other related items.  $24,000 was allocated to non-discretionary expenses; those expenses we must pay regardless of whether we use the theatre or not.  For example,  building rent, liability insurance, electricity, and miscellaneous building maintenance.

Over the years our main source of revenue has been ticket sales, tuition for summer camp, and various fundraising events.  As mentioned above Catch A Falling Spy was forced to close after only a weekend and we lost money due to having to cancel two weekends of shows.  Without our normal source of revenue we have been able to stay afloat in part due to the generosity of so many of you and your ongoing support. Since April we’ve raised over $6,000 through cash donations, fundraising events like food delivery, and our yard sales. 

In late November we were awarded $6,721.00 through the Tuolumne Count Small Business and Private Nonprofit Assistance Grant Program.  This grant came just in time!  Otherwise we would have run out of money by the end of January.  This grant increases our cash on hand to $10,532 which will be enough to cover our expenses through April 2021.

With the uncertainty of when we will be able to begin theatre operations and start generating revenue from tickets sales and theatre programs we will continue our fundraising efforts in an effort to operate beyond April. (2)


Board of Directors

In 2019 we had a vision for 2020 where MYACT would grow artistically and organizationally and expand operations to begin moving up to “the next level”.  2020 turned out to be a year nobody expected. Since April 2020 our primary focus has been on ensuring we can maintain the theatre financially until we can once again begin normal or close to normal operations. 

Looking towards 2021 that vision remains in our sights.  We are seeking additional board members who can provide leadership in specific areas of theatre operations, fundraising, marketing, and community outreach.  Board members are typically also part of sub-committees with specific objectives like marketing activities, social media advertising, fundraising, building maintenance, production, etc.   The full Board meets once every two months (currently via Zoom) and meetings are typically two hours long.   In those meetings specific assignments and activities are assigned to individual members or committees.   Committees meet on an as needed basis to achieve annual goals and specific objectives and outcomes.  If you are interested in learning more you can contact Jessica Shapiro, Board President at (209) 743-5833 or Mike Morales, Treasurer at 925-337-3600. 

We will also be holding virtual informational meetings to provide more information to interested parties and to answer questions.  Those virtual meetings will be announced in the near future.

Junior Advisory Board

The Board of Directors recognizes the value the youth of our theatre family and community bring to the table.   We want to incorporate those voices into the development and growth of MYACT.  Therefore we will be establishing a Junior Teen Advisory Board beginning in 2021.  This group, comprised of youth between the ages of 12 and 18, will meet once a month to discuss issues related to Mountain Youth and Community Theatre. Under the direction of a board member the group will discuss and create proposals to present to the main board on everything from potential performance ideas to fundraising, community outreach, and overall youth involvement.  Besides the value we expect this group to bring to the theatre we also believe the members will  learn about effective communication, conflict resolution, leadership, and everything it takes to run a theatre during and in between shows.  If any youth are  interested in participating they can email to express their interest.  

We will also be planning virtual informational meetings to provide more information to interested parties and to answer questions.  Those virtual meetings will be announced in the near future.


While there is still uncertainty about the coming year we are optimistic that we will be able to resume some level of operations, hopefully by Spring or Summer.   In the coming weeks we will begin preparing, as we do each year, for the new year of productions and events.  We are hopeful that we will be able to put up at least two youth productions, summer camp, and one community production.  We also hope to resume the popular paint nights as well as introducing some new educational programs centered around theatre.  We will continue to provide updates to you and the general community through email, our Facebook Pages ( and , and our website (

Thank you for your ongoing support.  We hope to see you in 2021. 

Meanwhile, please feel free to reach out to us if you are interested in joining our Board of Directors, the Youth Advisory Board, or just have questions or ideas.  

With deep appreciation,

MYACT Board of Directors

  • Jessica Shapiro, President
  • Kandas Wright, Vice-President
  • Bonnie Bettencourt, Secretary
  • Mike Morales, Treasurer
  • Jessica Miranda Rhoades, Member At Large
  • Erin Santoro, Member At Large

 (1) For a complete accounting of our 2020 Operating Budget and Expenses please contact Mike Morales at 925-337-3600

(2) Mountain Youth and Community Theatre is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.  Our non-profit identification number is 11-3797591

MYACT Mission Statement: This corporation has been formed for public purposes, to foster educational opportunities for children and adults of all ages in the performing arts, with a specific focus on theater, music, dance, voice and other arts.

Comments are closed.