UPDATE 11/19/18

The death toll from the Camp Fire in Northern California increased by one Sunday to 77, while the number of people unaccounted for has decreased to 993 people. The blaze was two-thirds contained as of Sunday night after consuming some 150,000 acres. In Southern California, just outside Los Angeles, the Woolsey Fire was 91 percent contained after burning 96,949 acres and killing three people. Dense smoke from the fires has been smothering parts of the state with what has been described as "the dirtiest air in the world."

UPDATE 11/11/18

I spoke with Julie, Karyl Lynn's Assistant at RTC tonight, and asked if the Woolsey Fire or campfire12 AP Camp Fire are anywhere near Ventura proper, since they are in Ventura County. A third fire, currently burning in San Bernadino is close to being under control. Julie said that fortunately the fires are far enough away, and the winds are not in a direction that would currently put RTC, or the people of Ventura proper in an immediate danger. Let's keep our fingers crossed on this, shall we?


Here is an online daily update link:






Dear Friends:

In Rubicon Theatre's first full season, a reviewer described the company as the "rising star in the constellation of Southern California theatre." Sixteen years later, with Rubicon premieres produced throughout the nation, and Ovation, L.A. Drama Critics Circle and New York Drama Desk awards, that star continues to shine brightly. And as one character in our holiday show says, "We're all a part of it." 
As an actor who has appeared in a number of the company's shows, I have experienced the deep sense of community that is at the very core of Rubicon's being. There's an exhilaration and joy that comes from being part of an ensemble. Rubicon's commitment to creating a collaborative environment encourages us as artists to overcome our fear in service to the common project, the play.
Staff and supporters make us feel like family. I'm always astonished that a professional theatre is so grounded in community. Volunteers give their time to raise funds, plan events, prepare food, work in the box office, market the shows, etc. and through this work, share a collective sense of accomplishment while building long-lasting friendships.
Young people who participate in Rubicon's education outreach programs face their limits and expand and embrace their abilities. They learn discipline and become part of a team. Students who attend daytime matinees at the theatre gain insight into themselves, their culture, and other cultures and time periods.
With all this, I'm most in awe of Rubicon audiences. Individuals of many different ages, backgrounds and beliefs who may not, on the surface, have much in common sit in the dark, laughing or crying at the same moments (or in the case of Lonesome Traveler which opens in NY this spring), singing along to the same tune.
Rubicon is a place we come together to experience our shared humanity. And in a time in our world when there are so many obstacles to peace and good will, I am glad to be a small part of a small place that consciously creates connections and builds community. We can't take that for granted.
This holiday season, Rubicon especially needs your support. Some of our larger donors have had life changes that affect their ability to give at their previous levels (though not their commitment or care). For the company to continue to provide artistic excellence, we need you! Please join my fellow board members and me by playing your part to ensure Rubicon's continued impact.
Help Rubicon shine brightly. Donate today. 805.667.2900
Thank you, and happy holidays to you and yours!

For every donation Rubicon receives on #Giving Tuesday (that's TODAY, December 2, 2014!), we will make a gift of our own.
Each donation to Rubicon Theatre Company  will be matched with a ticket to attend our Tiny Tots Concert and Holiday Party with Santa and friends for a child who could not otherwise afford to come.
Give today, and your gift will keep on giving - increasing access to the arts for our youth, spreading the #unselfie movement, and making our community a more creative, joyful place to be.








Arts groups win almost $1 million in grants

  • By Kathleen Wilson
  • Posted October 5, 2011 at 4 p.m., updated October 5, 2011 at 5:08 p.m.

Three Ventura County arts groups have won grants totaling nearly $1 million from the James Irvine Foundation, officials announced Wednesday.

The Rubicon Theatre won $350,000, the largest award among those given to 13 arts groups on California's Central Coast.

"We couldn't be more excited about it," said Karyl Lynn Burns, artistic producing director of the regional theater in Ventura.

The Ojai Music Festival received $325,000 and the Museum of Ventura County got $300,000 in the grants approved Wednesday by the board of the San Francisco foundation.

Foundation officials said the grants are designed to boost nonprofit groups' financial strength and increase cultural participation from underrepresented communities.

Jeff Haydon, executive director of the Ojai festival, said the grants are unusual. Most funding organizations give money for programs, not the marketing, planning and financial projects that strengthen nonprofit groups, he said.

"These grants are really valuable and rare," he said.

All three groups also got grants in 2008 through a regional initiative begun by the foundation to bolster the arts in communities other than California's major cities. The $12 million program helped arts groups in areas stretching from the Central Valley and the Inland Empire to suburban Southern California counties and the Central Coast.

The Ventura County arts groups took home $850,000 that year and $975,000 this time. Officials said they will use the money to build audiences and their organizations.

The Museum of Ventura County plans to hire a consultant to help increase support and audience among Latinos, plus add a volunteer coordinator and director of finance. Executive Director Tim Schiffer said the hiring of the financial director will allow him to spend more time working on exhibitions and programs.

Haydon intends to use the funds to expand the audiences coming to the festival and improve financial management.

Rubicon managers will develop a strategic plan, evaluate capital facilities and rebuild staffing levels cut in the economic downturn. The organization also will work on increasing the number of Latinos who come to the theater. Organizers expect to produce a show in both English and Spanish in the 2012-13 season.

Other organizations winning grants include the State Street Ballet in Santa Barbara, the Santa Barbara Symphony Orchestra and Opera Santa Barbara, the National Steinbeck Center in Salinas and the Monterey Jazz Festival.

© 2011 Ventura County Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.



Rubicon Theatre gets a reprieve

Troupe says it has a deal to keep playhouse


Stephanie Zimbalist will portray Katharine Hepburn in the one-woman play “Tea at Five” at the Rubicon Theatre in Ventura.
Ensemble Theatre Co./David Bazemore 

Stephanie Zimbalist will portray Katharine Hepburn in the one-woman play “Tea at Five” at the Rubicon Theatre in Ventura.

Stephanie Zimbalist will play Katharine Hepburn in the one-woman play “Tea at Five.” The play opens Aug. 25.
Ensemble Theatre Co./David Bazemore

Stephanie Zimbalist will play Katharine Hepburn in the one-woman play “Tea at Five.” 
The play opens Aug. 25.

Leaders of Ventura’s cash-strapped Rubicon Theatre Co. last week released two pieces of good news: They have reached a deal in principle to hold on to its foreclosed playhouse, and unveiled an unexpected nearly four-week run of a one-woman play that tells the story of Katharine Hepburn.

The combination should provide a boost for the award-winning playhouse as it maneuvers to stay financially viable and convince members and sponsors it can still stage top-quality programming that cemented its national reputation.

The refinancing plan, which still must be finalized, would call off an Aug. 30 public auction for the 200-seat theater, a renovated historic church in downtown Ventura.

Final documents are being drafted to restructure about $900,000 in outstanding debt that will allow the regional theater company to maintain ownership, said Roz Warner, Rubicon’s board chairwoman, who met with officials from Rabobank last week.

“We absolutely will be done before that,” Warner said of the Aug. 30 deadline.

Steep cuts — including staff reductions and co-productions with other companies to spread advertising and preproduction costs and touring — have put the company in improved financial condition, Warner said. The company plans to begin its 13th season this fall.

Closing the current season will be “Tea at Five,” a one-woman play that tells the story of Katharine Hepburn in a monologue. Directed by Jenny Sullivan, the play will feature veteran actress and past Rubicon performer Stephanie Zimbalist as Hepburn.

The production, to run from Aug. 25 through Sept. 19, has garnered positive reviews during its run at the Guthrie Theatre in Minneapolis, Ensemble Theatre in Santa Barbara, and Cape Playhouse in Cape Cod, Mass.

“We have really focused, even as we have cut costs, on storytelling and quality and keeping that artistic integrity,” said Karyl Lynn Burns, producing artistic director.

Stretched by contrary trends

Like playhouses across the country, Rubicon has grappled for years with a widening budget shortfall. It relied on a small cadre of individuals and companies for sizable contributions, which have dropped as the economy soured. At the same time, production costs continue to rise.

Even with sold-out performances, ticket and concession sales typically cover 40 to 50 percent of a show’s cost, leaving a gap that must be covered by donations, grants and earnings from a small endowment.

Today, Rubicon employs six full-time employees, and roughly 13 part-time employees, many of whom agreed to pay cuts of 10 percent to 40 percent.

“At one time, we had 28 full-time employees,” Burns said.

The company is on track to eliminate about $500,000 in operating debt by Sept. 30, 2011, Burns said.

Despite its recent struggles, subscriber commitment is strong.

About 86 percent of last year’s subscribers have renewed, bettering a national average of close to 70 percent, Burns said.

Shorter season slated

The cost for the new season was reduced to help retain subscribers and possibly lure new ones. The season’s productions were reduced from seven to five, officials said.

“We don’t take for granted customer loyalty. We feel that loyalty comes because we are committed to quality,” Burn said. “We are committed to offering the greatest quality within our means.”

One area the company refused to cut was its youth education and outreach programs, even as the number of youths seeking fee waivers or scholarships has increased, Burns said.

This month, those youths will present the second Kids for Kids Benefit Concert.

The one-night fundraiser on Aug. 16 will feature a cabaret concert starring Gabby Trainor. Other performances will include adult actors Teri Bibb (from “Phantom of the Opera”), Trey Ellett (“Rent”), Joan Almedilla (“Les Miserables”) and Dina Bennett (“Lies and Legends”).

Last year’s event sold out, and raised more than $11,000 for youth programs.

In addition, “Hello My Baby,” the final summer youth musical camp production, will close its run Aug. 15.

Finalizing a deal with Rabobank and its debtholders would allow the company to shift its focus back on what it does best, entertaining people, Warner said.

The 6,320-square-foot theater’s assessed value was $1.43 million as of Jan. 1, according to the Ventura County Assessor’s Office. Details of the refinancing plan were not released.

Tom Mortensen, a vice president at Rabobank, declined to comment on the negotiations.

“This is our time to be successful,” Warner said.

On the Net:

© 2010 Ventura County Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.



Honorary Chair
Harris Measures Management Consultants, Former Deputy Mayor, City of San Buenaventura
President of the Board of Directors
Ventura County Obstetric & Gynecologic Medical Group
Medical Director, Community Memorial Hospital Centers for Family Health

Partner Emeritus, Tolman & Wiker Insurance

Physician, Ventura, Thousand Oaks Secretary, Saticoy Country Club Board of Directors

Director, Martin V. Smith School of Business & Economics, California State University, Channel Islands

CEO, Via Alegre Educational & Counseling Services, Owner/Operator, Starbuck’s Ojai Valley Ranch

Founder & CEO, Fashion Forms

Community Volunteer

President, Ojai Film Society

Chair of English, Performing Arts and Communication
California State University, Channel Island

Myers, Widders, Gibson, Jones
& Schneider, LL

President. Angel Heart Foundation

Immediate Past President

Managing Director

President, Grandes Dames

Legal Advisor
 April 2009

We cannot stress this enough. With the economy as it is, the individuals and companies who have supported us through large monetary gifts over the years have taken a serious financial hit and are presently unable to support us at the level they have given in the past.

Our ticket prices cover less than half of what our shows actually cost us to produce. If we charged full price, our $49 tickets would rise to cost over $100 each.

As in the musical Fiddler on the Roof, it is going to take our village of Ventura to solve this problem.

We know you have been hit too; we all have. That’s why we have launched a campaign to raise $1 million through a gift we all can afford:  $365. For just $1 a day, you can ensure that Rubicon Theatre Company will continue to produce the wonderful shows that you have enjoyed for the past eleven years.  

We need 2,400 gifts to achieve our goal, and we need them now. We can do this…together.

However, without your support, we will not be able to continue.

Please give today, and please ask your fellow villagers to join you in giving.

To make a contribution:
Please contact Patrick O’Hara at 805.667.2912 ext.237 (preferred)
Rubicon Theatre Company
1006 E. Main Street
Ventura, CA 93001

1006 E Main Street Ventura CA United States, 93001

UPDATE 9/23/09:

Below are some PSA’s for RTC’s “It Takes A Village” Campaign. They are also viewable, AND DOWNLOADABLE TO SHARE WITH OTHERS, on Rubicon’s new YouTube Channel, which can be found here:


Rubicon friends Michael Learned, Cliff DeYoung, George Ball, Amanda McBroom, Eric Lange, Stephanie Zimbalist, Ted Neeley & Bonnie Franklin, all actors from stage and screen, lend their support to "It Takes A Village."

Ted Neeley talks about RTC and It Takes A Village.

Bruce Weitz talks about RTC and It Takes A Village.

Eric Lange talks about RTC and It Takes A Village.

Bonnie Franklin talks about RTC and It Takes A Village.

Sydney Unseth talks about RTC.

UPDATE 6/10/09:  I've just received this e-mail from Karyl Lynn Burns, Co-Founder of RTC:

From: Karyl Lynn Burns
Subject: Rubicon Theatre Village Campaign Update
Date: Wednesday, June 10, 2009, 4:41 AM
Dear Fellow Villagers:

Today we start our first formal e-mail update to those of you who expressed interest in receiving periodic updates about Rubicon’s It Takes a Village campaign.   

The good news: nearly 600 people (including some who wished to be anonymous) have given a total of $191,346. We have an additional $3,752 in pledges, with a grand total of $195,090 committed to the campaign. We are now about 19.5% of the way to our goal of $1 million!
The challenge:  We are still fighting cash flow needs and MUST raise an additional $200,000 towards the goal in the next two to three weeks.
Thank you to you whose names are listed at the bottom of this e-mail for being early believers in this new grass-roots way of raising support.  The idea is “many hands make light work.” Instead of 80% of the funds coming from 20% of the people, the goal is for everyone to participate to the extent of their ability. We are asking all who benefit from Rubicon's presence in our community to consider making a gift of at least $1 a day - or $365 a year. It's also possible to make a monthly pledge of $31 or more. If we all do what we can, we WILL achieve the goal. We will be the people who would not let our community’s non-profit professional theatre falter in these difficult times and who ensured it was here for the next decade and for future generations!
Examples and Ideas
·        Rubicon Board Member Marion Witte of the Angel Heart Foundation came up with the idea of Village Elders – the goal was to find 10 people to give $10,000 each once we reached the $100,000 mark. It’s the main reason we’ve seen significant growth in the past two weeks. We are thankful to those who have joined the Elders program so far: Marion (leading by example, thank you!), Lori and Richard Reisman, Barbara Meister and Barber Automotive Group (in memory of Larry Meister) and an Anonymous contributor who gave in honor and in memory of a recently departed friend Lillian Ludlam, who loved theatre. We are still looking for at least six more individuals to become Elders (Young Elders are welcome, too J). If you are able to join this group, please call us.
·        Stephen Kipp contributed $3,650 -- the recommended village donation amount of $365 for EACH person on his 10-member staff. Stephen announced this generous gift at a performance of Fiddler on the Roof  in which he hosted his clients for the show and a reception.
·        At a local salon, the hairdressers encouraged their customers to give and raised $365 in a day to donate to the cause.
·        One villager e-mailed friends and raised approximately $2,000. Would you like to do the same? Just cut and paste this address into your e-mail. Invite friends to join you and help us reach our goals. Here’s the hyperlink:
·        A supporter of Rubicon’s education programs has organized alums of the outreach programs to put on a benefit at the theatre in August. Look for details soon.
·        Gourmet chef Linda Hale and her husband Scott are going to prepare a primo meal in their home with a goal of raising $5,000 towards the campaign.
Rally Comments
Here’s a sampling of a few of the comments from attendees at the Town Hall Rallies.  We’ll send you a few with each e-mail so that we can remind each other of why we all care…
Why Rubicon Matters to Me…
“Great art!  Great family!  Great home to create in!” – Jenny Sullivan
“A place to belong and meet friends.” – Wanda Woessner
“Rubicon matters on many levels.  It is wonderful to have professional theatre in our community.  Most important is the Rubicon’s Education Outreach programs.  Serving our youth at a time when arts education is lacking in our schools is vital and timely.” – Tom and Debbie Golden
“Great art.  Local.” – Mike Merewether
“We love having quality theatre in our own town!!!  And we love the community feeling of having Rubicon in Ventura!” – Scott and Linda Hale

Why Rubicon Matters to the Community
“Exposes youth to theatre; brings people to Ventura.” – Carolyn Dolen
“Without the Rubicon and its great professionalism, rather than enriching our community it will begin the slow decline which we have so beautifully climbed out of with its growth.” – Karen Lee Hoffberg
“Our community needs local events of quality.” – Howard Brandwein
“A vibrant beat of artistic creation.” – Jeanne Scott
“The Rubicon offers quality entertainment close to home.  It’s Los Angeles-caliber performances in a community we all share and love.” – Nancy Kaye Swanson
It Takes a Village Contributors to Date – June 9, 2009
"Michita," Carol "Mike" Aalbers, Lynda and Rick Aldridge, Jean Archer, Christine Arenas-Magie and Paul Magie, Lila M. Atkisson, George Backman, George Ball and Amanda McBroom, Dr. and Mrs. Edward J. Banman, Rachel Bar, Phil and Sandy Bardos, Penny and Ray Barnds, Greta Bartsch, Donna and Jerry Beatty, Dr. Norma Beck,Victor and Natalia Berezovska, Sam Bern, Barbara and Bernard Bobitch, Henri and Therese Boisvert Tte, Jo Bowker, Barbara and Raymond Boyd, Marylee and Robert Bragulla, Bob and Mary Braitman, Howard J. Brandwein, Arlene Brooks, Earl R. Brooks, Shelly and Steve Brown, Peggy Bryant, Jenean Bugiada, Leo and Melinda Bunnin, Christina M. Burck, Diana and Robert Burdick, Donna and Jack Burger, Karyl Lynn Burns, Pat and Cathy Busch, Linda Carson, Patty and Gary Channer, K. Charnofsky and R. Sturgeon, Patti and Bill Chertok, Betsy and Dick Chess, Susan Clark, Ed Clark and Jane Delahoyde, Bijian Fan and Jerome Clifford, Victoria Coddy, Eloise and Chuck Cohen, Mary Ann Cohen, John and Jacqueline Cole, Doris and Ken Collin, Linda Collins, Frances A. Connelly, Al and Freddie Contarino, Ginny Costis, Alison B. Coutts-Jordan, Bill Crowe and Ann Gross, Mar lena Roberts Daly, Ronald and Deborah David, Lisa and Clay Davis, Nicholas Deitch, Bradford Dillman, Carolyn Dolen, Barbara and Gerald Donckels, Kathleen and Terry Dooley, Gun Dukes, John T. Dullam, John R. Edwards, Jack Ellison and Dixie D. Adeniran, H.E. and Frances Elson, David Elzer, Katherine Emerick, Ph.D., Jim and Kay Engel, David Engel, Mr. and Mrs. Garold Faber, Jodi and David Farrell, Warren and Ardelle Faue, Susan Ferguson, Norman Flam, Dr. Hany Fouad, Jonathan Fox, C.D. Franciscus, Cindy Frankey, Bonnie Franklin and Marvin Minoff, Arlene and Morrie Friedman, Harold and Harriet Friedman, Peter and Sandy Gaal, Mr. Michael D. Gainsborough, Mary and Jim Galbraith, Mr. and Mrs. Robert Galt, Jr., D. June and Gay Garabedian, Muriel Garcia, Bob and Brenda Garrison, Lynn and Al Geller, S. Lynne and Duane L. Georgeson, Mrs. Kin Gere, Sheldon Getzug, Kay Giles and Michael Mariani, Morty Glasgal, David and Maryellen Glyer, Debbie and Tom Golden, Diane and Peter Goldenring, Janet and Mark Goldenson, Bruce Goldenson and Tricia Keen, Leonard Goldman, Martie and Gary Golter, Mary Goodenough, Lea and Harold Gould, Richard Gould, MD, Judy and Art Goulet, David and Diane Grimes, Sol and Patty Grossman, Katherine and Dan Gunther, Louis and Melinda Haffner, Scott Hale Lighting, Pearl and Roy Hammerand, Margie and Ron Hanock, Whitney Hansen, Wm. and Diane Harkins, Jessica and Harvey Harris, Julie Heim, Linda Henderson and Ernie Scherb, Mr. Don Henninger, Phil and Carol Hershey, Thom as and Patricia Hester, Karen Lee Hoffberg, H.W. and C.S. Hoover, Doris Horton, Carol Howe and Lucien Lacour, Eric Hvolboll, Jon and Ann Ives, Michael Jackowitz, Phyllis Johnson, Dianne Johnson Selbrede, Dr. and Mrs. D. Gordon Johnston, Ed and Carol Jones, Dorothy and Robert Jones, Emily Jones, Marilyn Juday, Donna Kacerek, Kaila Kaden, Lydia and Marty Kaplan, Joanne and Monroe Kaplan, Alex Karras, George Kaub, Bill and Elise Kearney, Betty and Tom Kennedy, Kipp Financial Group, Ronald S. Kopp, Jasmine Kova, Lee and Linda La Frenz, Nicole and Phillip Laby, Haady Lashkari, Michael Learned and John Doherty, Harriet and Eric Leibovitch, Stanley and Barbara Leiken, Dr. Morris and Judy Leventhal, Linda Levitz, Jack and Ione Lollar, Tracy Long and Donald Taylor, Judge David W. Long and Shirley Critchfield, James Locher, Dalina Lowdermilk-Klan, Michael Lurie, John and Eleanor Lynn, Cynde and Steve Magidson, Louise M. Malcomb, James Malone, Margaret Martin, John and Pat Masterson, Stephen Maulhardt and Nancy Maulhardt Huff, Frank and Patricia McCallick, Gladys McDonald, Stephen McMorrow, Rosa Lee Measures and Al Harris, Barbara Meister/Barber Automotive Group, Elsie Mendelsohn, Loretta and Mike Merewether, Murray Meyers,  Carol Mickle and Jodi Sullivan, Marvin Miller and Kathlyn Roberts Miller, Margaret and Jerry Miller, Mr. and Mrs. M. Miser, Lee and Peg Molesworth, Susan Molnar, Katherine Montes, Teddi and Jerry Morris, Ted and Dale Muegenburg, Julie and Jack Nadel, Ted Pounder and Paulita Neal, Beatrice Alicia Nichols, Henry and Bobbie Offen, Eileen Ogle, Patrick O'Hara, Cherie Olson, James O'Neil, Sandi and Greg Orloff, Frances Page, Barbara and Owen Patotzka, William and Celia Patterson, Catherine Penprase, Diane and Steve Perren, Helen Pidduck, Mrs. Pamela Pinkham, Gene Pitman, Wilma S. Poe, Theodore Polk, James and Stella Port, Amy Povah, Keith Powell, James and Susan Prosser, Sheila and Robert Rakestraw, H.D. Ranzenhofer, Lori and Richard Reisman, Ann and Rodney Resnick, Corinne J. Rhoads, Rita Richardson, Jon Lawrence Rivera, George Roberts and Janice Standing-Roberts, Patricia Robinson, Bob Robinson, Alyce and Robert Robinson, Duane O. Rodgers, Donal F. Rodrigues, Diane Ronneberg, Linda Roos, Sharon and George Rose, Margaret Rothschild and Richard Palmer, Nancy and Bill Russell, Micheline Sakharoff, Pat Salem, Sam and Mary Saputo, Roy and Sharon Schneider, Charles and Jane Schneider, Charles and Mary Schwabauer, Jeanne Scott, Catherine Scott Burris, Dr. Don and Millie Seidman, Mr. and Mrs. Richard Selfridge, Lyndon R. Shaftoe, Robert Shaw, Mrs. Susan Shields, Tamar Shulem, Joel Silberman, Dr. and Mrs. Leonard Skaist, Signe and Bruce Smale, Rebecca and Jeffrey Smith, Cynthia and Jim Snell, Gary and Maureen Soporito, Paula Spellman, Lane Stalbird, Lisa Stephens and Dennis Hopkins, Rich Stewart and Harriet Clune, Eric and Missy Stoen, Midge and Dave Stork, Kathy and Bill Strnad, Mr. and Mrs. Jerry Sullivan, Jenny Sullivan, Nancy Kay Swanson, Judith and Melvyn Swope, Lee Tannen, Shirley Thayer, Timothy Tice, Ed and Dee Tingstrom, Delorine and Reid Tompkins, Warren and Jane Totten, Margaret and Dennis Travlos, Ruth and Jim Uphold, Allen and Kay Urban, Suzanne and Edward Vadnais, Mary Ann and William Bang, Michael Velthoen, Cindi Verbelun, Les and Judy Vielbig, Vicki Vierra, Phil Ward, Roz Warner and Michael Hogan, Jan and Hal Wasserman, Jerry and Brenda Watkins, Bill Whitlock and Art Mendoza, Jim Whitney, Gary and Cheryl Wilde, Julia Wilkerson, Mr. and Mrs. Robert Willis, Marion Witte, Wanda Woessner, Gail and Ed Wohlenberg, Joanne Wolf, Eunice M. Wood, Robert and Kathleen Wulf, Keith York, The Young Family, Helen Yunker, Margaret M. Zangrilli, Alfred Zaske, Myrna and Sy Zimmerman and David Zippel.

UPDATE 5/16/09:  I've just received this e-mail from Karyl Lynn Burns, Co-Founder of RTC:

From: Karyl Lynn Burns
Subject: TIME SENSITIVE: Please come TOMORROW for Rubicon Rally/Town Hall GRASSROOTS EVENT. We need YOU!
Date: Saturday, May 16, 2009, 12:04 AM

Dear Artists and Friends:

Please forgive the group e-mail, but time is of the essence. We are really feeling the trickle down effects of the economy. We have had a wonderful season thus far with Will Rogers America!, Rubicon Family Christmas, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? and Fiddler on the Roof. Our past and present are beautiful and we have great joy just thinking of the many exquisitely talented artists and devoted donors who have stood on and behind this stage. But at present we are truly in peril and need your help.

Could you pretty please come to Rubicon
TOMORROW (SATURDAY) for a one-hour event from 3:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. with teas and cookies after? It is a Rally and Town Hall. Many of our board members, our wonderful Ventura Mayor Christy Weir and others will be there. The goal is to jumpstart a positive, grass-roots effort to help us muddle throught these very challenging times.

Our MD Ken is going to present the financial facts and figures past and present, we'll brainstorm as a group, we'll have some surprise and fun entertainment, refreshments, etc. We have launched a campaign called "It Takes a Village." In general, the idea is that in these times the handful of people who have sustained the company just can't. (The traditional fundraising model is 20% of the people give 80% of the funds. Now, instead of a small group of people doing a lot, we're trying to engage many, many people in the community who care about Rubicon to each do a little. It's the old adage of "many hands make light work."  We are suggesting $1 a day, or $365. Or if that's challenging, we are asking people to consider $30 a month on a credit card. We're doing home parties, bake sales, you name it.

HERE'S HOW YOU CAN HELP. Can you come to the rally tomorrow? Your presence and enthusiasm will help create a synergy that is needed right now. Second, if you know of folks who you can invite to come to the rally, please ask them to join you. Third, if you know someone who can give financially who cares about theatre, please encourage them to do so.

Here's what will happen at the event. We will have a discussion of "Does Rubicon matter to you?"/"Does Rubicon matter to the community?" Then our Managing Director will do a quick Power Point of "here's where we've been financially and here's how the times have changed." Then we'll have Doug Halter, who some of you know, talk about the new model. Then we'll have rally kits with ideas (and hopefully some fun "RTCV" stickers - "Rubicon Theatre Company Villager." Then, some artists you know - Manough from Songs for a New World, Rick Cornette from You Can't Take It With You, our development coordinator Patrick O'Hara - maybe a few others - will do a "Villager People" presentation where they will parody "YMCA" and turn it into "RTCV". (We had to do something a little creative and entertaining.)

Anyway, we really NEED YOU. Please come and help communicate that Rubicon matters to you and encourage folks to help with this campaign.

If any of you from out-of-town would like to stay for the opening gala of Spit Like a Big Girl at 7:00 p.m. on Saturday, just call me on cell. There's a party after at Milano's at the Harbor. Call me on cell if you have any question - (805) 407-7797.



P.S. Attached is an information sheet. I am also including a card for people who want to help in case you want to e-mail to anyone you know.

P.S.S. Come from the Seaward exit as there is a bike race downtown. Call me if you need to know how.

Rubicon Rally and Town Hall Meetings
If you care about Rubicon and the future of our region, we are looking for first-time volunteers – no prior experience necessary – as well as those who have volunteered before.
Tomorrow, Saturday, May 16 from 3 to 4:00 p.m.

As you know from announcements at Rubicon’s recent acclaimed production of Fiddler on the Roof, our annual campaign this season is “It Takes a Village.”
With the current economy, now, more than ever, it really does take an entire village – villagers of every age and background and every walk of life to sustain a non-profit theatre company. We are trying to explore ways to think “out of the box” and create a new grass-roots model of support, but we need you!
If you care about Rubicon and the future of our region – please join us!
Come meet our “It Takes a Village” Chairs Sandra Laby and Doug Halter; visit with Rubicon founders Karyl Lynn Burns and James O’Neil; see friends, neighbors and associates; and say hello to adults and young people whose lives are positively impacted by Rubicon’s presence in our community.
Get a behind-the-scenes look at how a non-profit theatre functions, hear a status report on the finances of Rubicon, and ask any questions you may have. Then help us brainstorm about how to go forward in these challenging times. 
WHO?               YOU – anyone and everyone from Ventura, or from cities from Santa Barbara to Los Angeles who loves great theatre. Anyone interested in the arts in general, the cultural life of our community, Rubicon’s impact on economic development, or the education and outreach programs Rubicon provides for our region’s youth.


WHEN?            Saturday, May 16 at 3:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
WHERE?          Rubicon Theatre, 1006 E. Main Street
                        Come in the Laurel Street door and into the theatre
A light dinner will be served downstairs in the rehearsal room on the 13th, tea and cookies on the 16th.
WHY?               Because you are key to the future of Rubicon and the arts! Come be a part of the village! 
RSVP to Patrick O'Hara at or at 805.667.2912, extension 237.
 We need you!  Remember, even if you’ve never volunteered or served on a committee before, this is an inclusive, grass-roots effort! There are ways you can make a difference!  Attendees are under no obligation --  please come and learn more.



How You Can Help
[ Larry Meister Memorial Fund ]
Bequests ]

Your support, though subscriptions and donations, is the key to our success. Even with many sold-out performances, the cost of your ticket accounts for less than half of the cost of operation this season. We depend on your generous contribution to continue producing professional theater in our community.

The Rubicon Theatre Company is a non-profit organization and contributions are fully tax deductible to the extent allowed by law.
The Rubicon's Federal Tax I.D. # is: 77-0495901.

We are grateful for our individual and corporate partners who recognize the benefits of professional theater in our community. In return, Rubicon Theatre ensures that these donations are spent to fulfill the theatre's mission. We thank all our donors for their gifts this year.

For questions or information about donation to Rubicon, please contact: Mychele Dee, Development and Community Relations Director, (805) 667-2912 ext. 237.

The Larry Meister Memorial Musical Fund
[ How You Can Help ]
Bequests ]

With the blessings of Barbara Meister and the Meister family, Rubicon Theatre Company has inaugurated a special fund in honor of Rubicon founding board member, philanthropist, business person and community superstar Larry Meister. The fund will support the production and development of mainstage musicals, and also support musical training and education outreach programs.

[ How You Can Help ]
Larry Meister Memorial Fund ]

Bequests support the Rubicon's programs after your lifetime. They may be cash, securities, real estate, or other property. We are very grateful for your consideration. Your will can include:

  • a specific dollar gift
  • a set percentage of your estate
  • specific assets
  • the remaining assets after providing for heirs.

Bequests can be with no restrictions or for a single purpose.

Unrestricted gifts are easier for us, to move money quickly where it's most needed.

If you prefer your gift go to a particular use, please describe the use as broadly as possible. Give us a call before drafting this part of your will to assure the provisions can be implemented as you desire.

If your estate plan is in order and you'd like to let us know, click our Estate Intention Form.

Unrestricted Bequests
Restricted Bequests
Bequests for Endowments

Unrestricted Bequests
Unrestricted bequests are for the Theatre's general and best use at the discretion of the Board of Directors:

"I give, devise, and bequeath to Rubicon Theatre (the sum of $) (percent of my estate) (the following property) (the rest, residue, and remainder of my estate). The property comprising this gift may be used to further the charitable purposes of Rubicon Theatre at the discretion of its Board of Directors."

Restricted Bequests
You may define the usage of your bequest. A restricted bequest might read:

"I give, devise, and bequeath to Rubicon Theatre (the sum of $) (percent of my estate) (the following property) (the rest, residue, and remainder of my estate). The property comprising this gift shall be used for (state the purpose). If, in the opinion of the Board of Directors, or their successors, the need for funds for the charitable purpose described above no longer exists at some future date, the Directors, or their successors, are authorized to use these funds in the best interest of the Theatre."

Bequests for Endowments
Endowments are monies for investment. Rubicon's endeavors are funded by the interest.

Restricted Endowment
Unrestricted Endowment

Unrestricted Endowment

"I give, devise, and bequeath to Rubicon Theatre (the sum of $) (percent of my estate) (the following property) (the rest, residue, and remainder of my estate). The property comprising this gift may, for investment purposes, be merged with the general investment assets of Rubicon Theatre. The gift shall be entered into the Theatre's books and records as The Fund and shall always be so designated. The spendable income therefrom, but not the principal, shall be used to further the purposes of Rubicon Theatre in such manner as the Board of Directors may direct."

Restricted Endowment

"I give, devise, and bequeath to Rubicon Theatre (the sum of $) (percent of my estate) (the following property) (the rest, residue, and remainder of my estate). The property comprising this gift may, for investment purposes, be merged with the general investment assets of Rubicon Theatre. The gift shall be entered into the Theatre's books and records as The Fund and shall always be so designated. The spendable income therefrom, but not the principal, shall be used for (state the purpose) . If, in the opinion of the trustees of the Theatre, the need for funds for the purpose described above no longer exists at some future date, the Board of Directors, or their successors, are authorized to use these funds in the best interest of the Theatre."

For more information regarding Rubicon funds and donation, please contact Mychele Dee at 805-667-2912 ext. 237 or e-mail at: