Curtain Call, Starring Bernie Madoff

FLORIDA STAGE LOGOWe received some sad news in one of our news alerts feeds and, upon reading the story of the closing of Florida Stage in Palm Beach, FL found that the writer was attempting to draw a connection between the closing of this well known theatrical venue and the Bernard Madoff ponzi scheme scandal.

At first, it seemed like a stretch, but the more I thought about it, the more sense it seemed to make.  The theatre’s own web site references the Madoff affair and points to a decline in season tick sales from past customers who had been Madoff victims.  Since Palm Beach County Florida was the home of many of Madoff’s dupes, there is probably some truth to this being a cause of the failure.

While it may be difficult to hang blame for your failure on such a relatively small number of potential patrons, it is certainly not difficult to see how discretionary spending on entertainment has been cut back by so many who suffered some sort of loss in the general financial difficulties that the country now faces.

When you couple ticket sales declines with a decrease in charitable giving and a reduction in the size of endowments that provide grants to arts organizations, the arts, in general, are really taking a hit.

Based on information relayed to us by many of our customers in the arts, we think that there will be a lot more of this sort of news in the coming months.

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