Dear Friends of the Sunrise,
Wow, 2020 has certainly been a year!
We started 2020 by building on our 2019 success of offering new, interesting, and diverse programming – the beautiful Les Miserables Anniversary Concert, the moving live storytelling of Mitch Capel in Our Story, the humor and talent of Momma Molasses and her Singer/Songwriter Concert, and the amazing sold out Met Opera’s Porgy & Bess live simulcast.
This all abruptly came to a halt in March, with a never-seen, never-anticipated global pandemic. Always concerned about our patrons, we set in motion a series of plans to keep everyone safe and to ensure the theater’s viability.
With great disappointment, we cancelled the sold out Riverdance 25th Anniversary Show, Met Opera performances, and the Bolshoi Ballet, and postponed Temple Theatre’s live performance of Steel Magnolias. We expected to be closed a few weeks.
The Governor’s stay-at-home order forced us to cancel the HillBenders Bluegrass Concert, the Good Shot Judy Concert, and the remainder of the Opera and Ballet seasons. The Sunrise was forced to cancel month after month of First Fridaya - the symbol of a Southern Pines summer and the most important fundraiser for the theater.
The cancellations kept coming. Dropped from the calendar were numerous live concerts, wonderful films, and the annual Raise the Roof, which has been a staple of community support and entertainment for over 20 years.
The Sunrise is working diligently to try to offset the immense deficit and loss. We began selling concessions curbside, launched a virtual theater, and after months of pursuing approval, we began to show outdoor movies, weather permitting (Hello hurricane season). It’s been tough going.
Many of you have offered words and letters of support. Many of you have offered financial support. All of you love this place as we do.
This year’s Annual Appeal is simple: We need your help. Any gift will let us tread water as we slowly throw the doors open to a sweet southern breeze and welcome you back with the best entertainment, the most thought-provoking programs, and some of those fabulous Sunrise concerts.
This is your theater. This is my theater. This is OUR theater. Let’s do this together.
Sunrise Preservation Group
Donations can be made online, by phone or mailed to 244 NW Broad Street, Southern Pines, NC 28387. Thank you for your support!