A message from Starlight CEO, Rich Baker
Dear friends, patrons, donors and fans of Starlight,
At Starlight, we're lucky for many reasons. We have incredible patrons, like you, who join us under the stars each summer and indoors each winter. We have generous donors who support Starlight and fund the future of the arts industry through community engagement programs. We have dedicated employees who work diligently year-round to ensure our exceptional performing arts experiences. And, we've had the honor of contributing to a thriving Kansas City community for nearly 70 years.
I'm sure your in-boxes, like mine, have been filled with messages from concerned leaders, as well as event cancellations and postponements from local arts organizations. I myself have started this message a few times but have let a day, then another pass, my optimism keeping me from hitting "send." While I remain hopeful and believe in the resilience of Kansas City and our country, I must address how the circumstances surrounding COVID-19 may affect Starlight's upcoming season.
To date, we've had three cancellations in our 2020 Broadway Series—Riverdance 25th Anniversary, Waitress and The SpongeBob Musical. While I'm very disappointed that we won't be able to present these titles this year, I'm hopeful that we'll be able to present them in the future. We have also made the decision to reschedule our first concert. The NF concert, originally scheduled for May 12, has moved to August 13. Ticket buyers to these events have been contacted.
Ensuring the health and safety of Starlight employees is one of our top priorities. Last week, we elected to adjust the majority of our staff to work from home. Starting Tuesday, March 24, we shut down our offices and facilities in support of the directives of Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas and Jackson County. Our Starlight team will continue to serve you from home, and, as we work with our touring concert artists and Broadway shows, we will update our website and ticketholders as information becomes available. We will continue to follow the guidance of health officials to protect our employees' health, and are working hard to ensure that protection extends as far as possible with regard to employment and financial stability to minimize the impact that we know many workers are feeling.
As we all learn to adjust to this "new normal" for the foreseeable future, we thank you for your understanding, patience and continued support as we move forward.
I know that the theatre community is resilient. Our staff is resilient. Starlight is resilient. At Starlight, we like to refer to our summer "under the stars." Now, more than ever, I look forward to when we can again meet under the stars at Starlight!
Until then, stay safe, stay healthy and stay home.
President & CEO