We welcome the Athenaeum theatre to the Zealous Good family! They are a cultural center for both new and experienced art groups. They offer affordable rates for companies to practice and preform leading to a more open, diverse community for the performers and audience. They also offer office space for arts organizations. We asked them a few questions to let everyone get to know what they do better.
What do you enjoy most in your work?
In one word it be the variety of this place. Nowhere else in Chicago do you have as many performing arts groups rehearsing, performing and creating art. We have a dozen not-for-profit arts groups that have offices in the building and in the past year we hosted 70 different shows on three stages. Every week it’s something new theater, dance, music its all on our four stages. I’m lucky to be able to call so many of these talented people friends as well as colleagues. It’s never boring, that’s for sure.
What is your biggest challenge as an organization?
Like any not-for-profit arts group finding the resources to operate. It’s not simply finding donors and grants, it is building an audience for everything we do here. Cash is great but in-kind donations like what we hope to get from Zealous Good, saves us money on things we need. We are not-for-profit that exists so other arts groups can afford to do their art here. Supporting a century plus old building requires a lot.
What is something people might not know about the theatre?
We are Chicago’s oldest, continuously operating Off-loop Theater. Opened our doors in 1911. Over 103 years we have accumulated three ghosts and lot of theatric performances. The building has had the talents of Eartha Kitt, Jeff Mangum, Patti Griffin, Ben Gibbard and Laura Marling are just a few of the names that have performed in our historic opera house.
Our mission is to keep the Athenaeum Theatre an affordable home to Chicago’s performing arts community. So we are a not-for-profit dedicated to other not-for-profits. We are not just about renting space, we work with arts groups collaboratively to grown their audience and ours. We look at their success as our success. A full house for a show benefits us both and provides affordable entertainment to the community. Think of us as the locavore paradise for Chicago theater with 4 stages under one roof.
We really appreciate Zealous Good, we are new members but already we have received our first donation of a cordless leaf blower.
To donate to Athenaeum Theatre and other non profits look at the charity page on Zealous Good!