Poway Onstage Releases Statement Of Position On The City Of Poway's November 5th Workshop

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On October 29th, the City of Poway published the agenda for a November 5th workshop to explore new operational models for the Poway Center for the Performing Arts. The workshop is today, Tuesday, November 5th at 7pm at Poway City Hall, 13325 Civic Center Dr, Poway, CA 92064

This workshop has been in development since the City of Poway's June budget meeting wherein City staff was asked to explore new operating models with an eye toward reducing or eliminating the City of Poway's annual subsidy of the PCPA (currently $667,000). This subsidy is the net loss on operations of the PCPA which include hosting shows by the Poway OnStage, Poway Unified School District and 40+ community organizations who rent the PCPA. Of that $667,000, Poway OnStage received $113,000 in FY2019-20 as part of its annual agreement with the City (this amount is scheduled to go down to $93,000 in FY2020-21)

The models proposed in the staff report range from maintaining the current operational model, to closing down the majority of the building (keeping open only the drama room for PUSD classes), to asking Poway OnStage to discontinue presentation of the Professional Performance Series and serve as a fundraiser for the City of Poway exclusively.

Adding new dimension to this discussion is the recent revelation that the Poway Unified School District has expressed an interest in acquiring the building. This raises more questions than it answers including: what is PUSD's vision for the Center? Might it leave room for Poway OnStage to continue its operations? Might it allow rental clients to continue using the space?

Until we know more about PUSD's intent, Poway OnStage can't really form a plan to move forward. Per the City's request, we have halted scheduling of our 2020/2021 Professional Performance Season until this issue is resolved. We look forward to conversations with the District and the City on this matter soon.

Should you be available and inclined to show your support of continued professional performances at the PCPA, please join us at tonight's 7PM meeting. The Workshop on the PCPA is the only significant item on the agenda, so the meeting should get to this topic quickly. This being a workshop, no vote will be taken, but the public will have an opportunity to voice opinions. We encourage you to show your support of a model that would allow Poway OnStage's Professional Performance Series to continue.

Poway OnStage is the not-for-profit organization who contracts annually with the City of Poway to provide a professional performance series at the City-owned Poway Center for the Performing Arts. In exchange for office space, preferred rates on tech, labor and facilities, and an annual subsidy, Poway OnStage books a series (usually 12-14 shows) of nationally and internationally touring talent from the worlds of music, dance, comedy and more. Each year, between 8,000 and 12,000 people visit the PCPA for Poway OnStage shows. For a list of upcoming shows, visit https://www.powayonstage.org/.

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