CINCINNATI–Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park Capital Campaign Co-Chairmen Woody Taft and Rob Reifsnyder announced today that the Rosenthal Family Foundation has made a significant pledge to the Playhouse’s capital campaign, a gift that includes naming rights to Shelterhouse Theatre.
The newly christened Rosenthal Shelterhouse Theatre will be unveiled at the beginning of the 2019-2020 season, after interior seating improvements are made as the first piece to be completed in the Playhouse’s capital project.
“The Rosenthal Family’s long history of supporting new work has been key to the Playhouse’s ability to produce world premieres every season,” said Blake Robison, artistic director. “The majority of those plays are staged in the Shelterhouse, which is what makes naming it for the Rosenthals such a perfect match. Lois Rosenthal, Dick Rosenthal’s late wife, an emeritus board member of the Playhouse, was an enthusiastic advocate for original, edgy theater. And, she and Dick loved the process of helping to present new works.”
“I’ve always enjoyed seeing the performances that resulted from our sponsorships of new, compelling work found and produced by the talented artistic producing directors of the Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park,” said Mr. Rosenthal. “And, we look forward to seeing them for many more years.”
The Rosenthal Family has supported 28 world premiere plays at the Playhouse since 1988, when they founded the New Play Prize, which continued through the 2002-2003 season. They serve as Season Sponsor of New Work, which they began supporting in 2013.
In February 2017, Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park announced a major capital campaign to build a new, state-of-the art Mainstage Theatre Complex. The construction timetable and building project design are not final, but the current projected opening date will fall in late 2021. The new mainstage theatre complex will cost $39.5 million. During the summer of 2019, all the seats in the Shelterhouse will be replaced and leg room will be added for the start of the 2019-2020 season in the Rosenthal Shelterhouse Theatre.
“The Rosenthal Family Foundation’s generous gift continues the fantastic momentum we’re experiencing with the capital campaign,” said Woody Taft, campaign co-chairman. “To date, we’ve raised $18 million, which includes $14.4 million toward the cost of the new building and an additional $3.6 million for endowment.”
Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park began performances in 1960 after a park shelterhouse was converted into a theatre. The Shelterhouse has been named for Jay Thompson since 1979. Mr. Thompson made the name available to the Playhouse for its capital campaign prior to passing away last year.
The Playhouse is supported by the generosity of almost 40,000 contributors to the ArtsWave Community campaign. The Ohio Arts Council helps fund the Playhouse with state tax dollars to encourage economic growth, educational excellence and cultural enrichment for all Ohioans. The Playhouse also received funding from the Shubert Foundation.
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