"Dear Friend of CTC," begins the post on the California Theatre Center's Facebook page.
California Theatre Center will be closing its doors, effective August 1, 2017.
After 41 years in the business of offering performances to audiences of over seven million and providing education programs for thousands of students, CTC's board and senior management, after careful deliberation, have concluded that it is not possible to maintain our quality of services to our community. Escalating costs and limited resources make it unsustainable for the company to continue operation.
Community reaction was immediate and rueful. Here's one typical comment from Alex Moissis: "How sad! ... Our children ... owe their confidence on stage and their communication and team-building skills to their mentors and friends at CTC. Through the program their command of the English language expanded as they became acquainted with wonderful theater works. Our family will never forget CTC."
Josie Saracino taught kindergarten and first grade for 20 years at Peninsula School in Menlo Park. "All of those years, I brought my kids to the California Theatre Center. A lot of them had never seen a live performance."
Saracino would build lesson plans around the play. The class would read the book beforehand, and draw their favorite scenes after. "It was so wonderful. I wish they could have found a funder," Saracino said.
"I’m having trouble finding words to express my sorrow at the loss of this great resource to our educational community,” wrote Kathleen Flynn, a teacher at Ohlone Elementary School in Palo Alto. “I cannot tell you how many wonderful plays our kids saw at CTC and how these talented actors and actresses brought to life so many stories for them...I just don't see how we can allow this to happen as a community. I'm heart broken."
The California Theatre Center's Box Office Manager Diana Burnell wrote KQED to say that the rising cost of living in Silicon Valley led to the closure.