GLENS FALLS, N.Y. (NEWS10) – The Adirondack Theatre Festival, a 25-year event drawing theatergoers to Glens Falls as an economic driver of the area, had its 26th season officially canceled this week.
In an impassioned release, festival director Chad Rabinovitz said the choice was only made after all other options had been explored, citing safety, finances, housing and union restrictions as among the factors in the way due to COVID-19.
“We’re of course heartbroken by this scenario,” Rabinovitz wrote. “Let’s face it: it sucks.”
In the stead of a physical festival, which was originally set to open on June 12 across the Charles Wood Theater and other Glens Falls venues, the people behind the festivities are instead putting on ATF On Demand, a virtual festival combined with a fundraiser.
The funds raised aren’t going just towards the festival itself, though, with Rabinovitz messaging that plans for 2021 are already in the works. The money will also be going towards supporting businesses in and around Glens Falls.
“We take great pride in being one of the leading economic drivers for our community and are deeply concerned for the many businesses who have so generously sponsored us and kept us going for more than 25 years,” Rabinovitz wrote.
Those interested in the festival’s virtual season can sign up with a donation at https://www.atfestival.org/atfondemand/. $50 or more gets access to the ATF On Demand digital platform, and then $25 of that donation will go toward a gift card of the buyer’s choice to a local business. The rest of the money goes to supporting the festival. Gift cards will be sent by mail.
The shows on demand are all the product of permission from and cooperation with playwrights and filmmakers who have worked previously with both the theatre festival and the Adirondack Film Festival, also run by the same group.
The lineup includes some shows originally slated for the 2020 in-person season, as well as callbacks to previous years and some new attractions. Visit https://www.atfestival.org/atfondemand/ for a full list of shows.
“Your donation will help us continue to support our artists and staff, handle the notable loss of income, and weather the storm so that we can be prepared to perform for you LIVE when it is safe to do so,” Rabinovitz wrote. “Please donate what you can. In the meantime, we’re working hard to create innovative and exciting off-season experiences for you, so stay tuned!”
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