Dear Friends of The Klein,

Programming: With our new projection, audio and lighting systems, we are now able to attract a more diverse array of events to our theater. We are building a fund to enable us to book more acts and do more self-presentations. For example, we have started to present films. This summer we were the only theater on the Connecticut coast to screen the award-winning first run documentary film, “Summer of Soul”. We were also pleased to host the debut of the 3-day Bridgeport Film Festival.

Our 2021 Annual Fund drive is well underway, and we profoundly thank all of you who have already donated or will make a contribution soon. Through your support, our organization continues to grow. In fact, our theater is booked with events nearly every day between now and July, but contributed income still accounts for 55% of our annual budget. We have many needs your generous dollars will fill:

In music, we started a Halloween tradition with rock band Terrapin, and six-time Grammy recipient and bandleader Gilberto Santa Rosa wowed a nearly sold-out audience with a lively evening of Salsa music in November. Finally, Klein favorite Elizardi Castro returned with a hilarious comedy show. On February 24th he’ll be back with his brand-new show, “All Grown Up”. After two years of Covid-related postponements, we look forward to the return of Vienna Boys Choir next December 3rd.

Capital Improvements: We incurred over $25,000 in damages to our new lighting system as a severe September storm caused the first ever water leak in our theater. We are grateful, however, to the City of Bridgeport for allocating funds to install a new roof and repair the exterior brick masonry. Work commenced in late October and will resume in Spring. Meanwhile, we recently applied for a new round of state funding that, if granted, will finally fulfill our goal of building a conference room and offices and also install an elevator. Both projects should be finished in 2022.

Klein Theatre Arts: Our tuition free afterschool arts education program is now in its 9th year, and our students continue to impress with their dedication and developing talents. This month after their triumphant Fall concert, KTA once again graced community events with enthusiasm. On November 30th they sang the National Anthem and 2 holiday songs at the Mayor’s Annual Holiday Tree Lighting ceremony in downtown Bridgeport. A day later they spent three hours decorating the tree and bannisters in the Klein lobbies and celebrated with a pizza and ice cream party. The next night they opened the Inauguration of the Bridgeport City Council and Board of Education members and led the audience in the recital of the Pledge of Allegiance. The ceremony ended with the screening of a video of KTA students singing “Somewhere” from “West Side Story”. We now have 4 high school students working with our stagehands as paid interns, and many other KTA students and their families volunteer as ushers.

In recent years all our outreach efforts have meant to raise awareness of The Klein and give people such as yourself more reasons to participate. Whether you attend, donate and/or volunteer, we urge you to please share in as many ways as you can. We wish all of you a happy and healthy holiday season and a joyous new year and hope to see you soon at The Klein!

Laurence Caso
Executive Director, The Klein Memorial Auditorium Foundation

DONATIONS

The Klein is sustained by the generosity of our community.  We offer a wide range of programming and the ONLY tuition- free after school arts program in Bridgeport, Klein Theatre Arts. The Klein is a 501c3 non-profit organization. Your donations are tax-deductible. 

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