As part of the of the public health response to contain the COVID-19 virus, the historic, nonprofit Florida Theatre is closed.
“Even though the Theatre has no income at this time, we have committed to keeping all 22 of our full-time employees employed for as long as we can,” said Florida Theatre President Numa Saisselin.
Saisselin continued by explaining, “However, our part-time show workers are already feeling the effects of the shutdown. Because there are no shows, our stagehands, bartenders, security and box office workers have no work.”
For patrons of Theatre, these are the workers that come into contact with the most at performances.
“The average gross wages for these people at a Florida Theatre show are about $6,000 a night,” said Saisselin, “There are already 24 shows that have cancelled or postponed. That’s $144,000 in wages already lost, and in all likelihood, there is more to come.”
Saisselin and the Florida Theatre Board of Directors is asking to public to contribute to a relief fund for these workers. The Florida Theatre administration will use all raised funds to support their employees who need it.
“In a high tech world, the arts and entertainment are still a people business, and we have to look out for each other at this difficult time,” said Saisselin.
The community can donate to the Florida Theatre Show Worker Relief by visiting https://floridatheatre.com/show-worker-relief-fund/.
Anyone who contributes $50 or more will receive a pair of complimentary tickets to a Summer Movie Classics screening (announcing soon) of their choice this summer.
The historic nonprofit Florida Theatre is sponsored by Community First Credit Union. For a complete list of upcoming events or to buy tickets visit the Theatre’s official web site floridatheatre.com.
Numa C. Saisselin, Florida Theatre President