$67,400 Raised

Venture supporters donate $67,400 to keep theater going

January 29, 2013 3:37 pm  •  By Jaci Webb

Community contributions have brought in $67,400 to help Venture Theatre pay off its $130,000 in debt.

Brooke Buchanan, president of the Venture board of directors, said the outpouring of support from the community, working as volunteers or making monetary donations, has been impressive. Meanwhile, Venture’s board has been working on a business plan to help the community theater operate in the black.

“We want the community to know that we have been working diligently on a business plan that will take Venture into the future as a financially stable business,” Buchanan said.

Buchanan plans to make an announcement on Wednesday about other Venture updates. The Billings Fringe Festival, co-produced by Venture Theatre and arts supporter Bess Fredlund, played to capacity crowds over the last two weekends. Money raised at the festival went toward operating expenses at Venture.

Two other big fundraisers are planned this week.

On Wednesday, 50 of Venture’s regular performers will present four different cabaret shows at 6, 7, 8 and 9 p.m. The event will be emceed by veteran Billings actors David Otey and Blaine Jensen. Admission is $20, $40 or $80, whatever audience members want to contribute. Montana Avenue restaurants are also donating a percentage of the proceeds from meals sold Wednesday night if patrons say they are there in support of Venture.

On Friday, Venture’s improvisational comedy group, the Funky Bunch, will pair with independent improv troupe Projectile Comedy to perform in an 8 p.m. show at Venture Theatre. Tickets are $25.