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Village Theatre to stay in Everett through 2025

EVERETT — The Village Theatre will continue presenting professional musical shows at the city’s performing arts center through 2025 under a new deal.
The City Council last week authorized a contract with the nonprofit theater company for $150,000 to manage the Everett Performing Arts Center (EPAC) on Wetmore Avenue. The contract will change slightly each year as it’s now being tied to the Consumer Price Index for the region.
The new contract halves the management fee, down from $306,000.
A trade-off is the city will no longer receive space rent for events in the EPAC.
Annual rental income hovers between $50,000 and $125,000 a year, far less than the $300,000 management contract. These figures showing an operating loss set off concerns among budget hawks on the city council last year that the arrangement bled money.
The prior arrangement produced an annual $500,000 net loss for the city. A city chart predicts the loss will drop to $412,000 for 2020, by lowering the management fee even though it waives the rental revenue. It costs the city a consistent $200,000 in facility upkeep and utility service for the publicly owned performance center.
The principle behind civic art centers is converting a vibrant show calendar into tourism dollars at downtown restaurants and shops.
Council members cheered city staff for working to lower costs in the new contract, and approved the new deal unanimously.
The Village Theatre has managed Everett’s performing arts center since 1998. Theater executives were amenable to lowering the fee, parks assistant director Kimberly Shelton said.
The city will still have the right in the contract to host events at the performing arts center at little cost. The contract requires Village Theatre present a season of at least four productions a year. This year’s remaining productions are a romp about marriage called “I Do! I Do!,” Tony award winner “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time” and “Million Dollar Quartet.” The season opened with “The Noteworthy Life of Howard Barnes” and a production run of a show that is based on the book “Matilda” is closing soon.

This version is slightly altered from the print version.


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