Engaging our community’s ‘rising stars’
Our multi-use arts education space is now under construction on Proctor’s 3rd floor
Proctors is nothing if not ambitious.
A recent four-year Capitalizing Our Future Campaign was a remarkable success. $13.2 million in initial donations fund an array of completed projects including:
- the establishment and expansion of Marquee Power, which heats and cools over a million square feet of downtown Schenectady;
- a Creative Entrepreneurship program that has allowed Proctors to engage in the development of new shows and assist the region’s arts organizations;
- the refurbishment and modernization of State Street and Stratton Plaza marquees, which welcome over 650,000 visitors each year;
- a painting and restoration project, completing an almost 40-year effort to restore the theatre to its 1926 grandeur;
- and the creation of an endowment to help fund classical music, dance, opera and multicultural programming, as well as increasing adult education offerings and supporting the Downtown Ambassador program.
Each element strongly address Proctors mission statement: “Through arts and community leadership, to be a catalyst for excellence in education, sustainable economic development and rich civic engagement, to enhance the quality of life in the greater Capital Region.”
In November 2016, Proctors announced a final public phase of the drive, with a $688,000 goal to complete the cornerstone element of the campaign, The Adeline Graham Theatrical Training and Innovation Center. The Addy, as the center will be commonly known, will engage the region’s young “rising stars” and impact the future of career opportunities in the creative arts.
Currently under construction, the Addy will be a multi-use arts education space, which will include a 100-seat theatre, three classrooms, a media lab and a dance studio/event space. The $2.5 million project will transform the vacant third floor of the historic Proctors arts complex (formerly The Carl Co.); launch a slate of new workforce training initiatives focused on creative sector occupations; and expand summer and after school arts education programs. The Addy will be a platform for a regional effort to nurture creative sector livelihoods; paths to careers; and opportunities for education, artistic expression and civic engagement for more than 1,000 students and 9,000 patrons annually at performances and special events.
Proctors is also collaborating with the Workforce Development Institute and private sector partners on a new project called Producing Creative. There are more than 30,000 jobs in the creative sector in the region but many people don’t have the training to access them. Producing Creative consists of creative job awareness materials for younger students; hands-on professional experience for high school students; and workforce development and apprenticeship programs connecting emerging professionals with training and certifications to work in a variety of performing arts careers. The Addy will be home to many of these initiatives.
“The response from the community to this campaign has been both humbling and inspiring,” said Proctors CEO Philip Morris of the campaign. “The progress we’ve made, in return, gives back to the community in so many ways—greener energy, job creation, historic preservation, enhanced arts programming. Now, with the Addy on the horizon, we can really empower the youth of the Capital Region and put the power of the arts into action and change peoples’ lives.”