December 9, 2023

Dear Friends of The Actors Studio,

In 1992 I took Marc Clopton’s Cold Reading class at The Actors Studio of Newburyport.  For me, and countless others, that experience raised our confidence, nurtured our creativity, and taught us the importance of theater.  Since then, my career has included roles at the Firehouse Center for the Arts from box office to Artistic Director and a seat on the board of Theater in the Open (TITO). Last year I was privileged to join the Actors Studio as Executive Director. It was truly a full circle moment for me, and I am excited to lead the Studio as we continue to inspire, engage, and expand our community.

This past year brought upheaval, as well as significant and exciting progress.

We transformed an abandoned movie theater in Amesbury into a working performance theater. The Studio reinstated in-person Full Moon Story Slams and new play readings through our North Shore Readers program, and highlighted seniors in our radio plays. We produced II Bastardo da Vinci, a new musical by local playwright Camille Garro, and solo performers from actors in California to local Intuitive Michael Garrish. We collaborated with Acting Out! Children’s Theater, The Playwrights Collaborative, Anna Smulowitz Productions, Exit Dance, Irene Kelleher and Emily Karel, and Steve Sacks and Pam Battin-Sacks. Our 8-months in Amesbury culminated with a hugely successful production of Alan Ayckbourn’s Communicating Doors.

Despite our theatrical successes, it became clear early on that this was not the right long-term space for us. An exhaustive 6-month search led us to our current Salisbury location. We moved in August and are working diligently to turn this 2000 square foot dance studio into a premier 65-seat community theater. Our new home is at street level, handicapped accessible, and offers plenty of

Art helps us understand our history, culture, and lives, as well as the experiences of others in a way nothing else can. It is a source of inspiration, reflection, and joy. We are creating a new home. One I promise will continue to be inviting, warm, inclusive, collaborative, and creative. 2024 will be an exciting year focused on new programming and building improvements (see attached list). Your kindness on Giving Tuesday has already raised $5,000 of the $20,000 needed to build out the theater.

I invite you to give generously to our Annual Appeal and help us reach our goals.

Your on-going friendship and support are key to the continued legacy of The Actors Studio and keeps our creative community healthy and growing.

With much respect and gratitude,

Kimm Wilkinson
Executive Director

The Actors Studio of Newburyport is a 501(c)(3) corporation.