uniquely austin

uniquely zach

t h e z a c h t h e at r e c a p i ta l c a m pa i g n


V i s i o n

Overland partners architects

Soon, there will be a new ZACH on the terraced banks of Lady Bird Lake—a comprehensive campus of performance spaces, educational rooms, production facilities and administrative offices. The only theatre complex of its kind in Austin, the new ZACH will be a welcome home for patrons and professionals, a place that continues to offer a unique theatre experience that ignites the imagination, lifts the spirit and creates meaningful dialogues that engage our community.

now, zach is calling on the community to help us turn this vision into a reality.
t h e z a c h t h e at r e c a p i ta l c a m pa i g n

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As the oldest resident theatre in Texas, ZACH has been integral to Austin since 1933. Each season, we welcome more than 120,000 patrons for more than 400 performances. ZACH offers an unequalled depth and breadth of productions, from musicals to dramas, to world premieres. Over its distinguished seventy-five year history, ZACH has been the most award-winning arts organization in Central Texas. There’s no question that ZACH has established a proven track record of financial success and steady growth. However, growth has occurred at a pace that has exceeded the expansion of ZACH’s facilities. In recent years, ZACH has had to take its larger productions off-site in order to have the technical capabilities and audience capacity required for professional production quality. The Kleberg Stage was built in 1972 as a community theatre and cannot support ZACH’s current demands for a modern, professional theatre. It has no fly, wing or trap space, and a limited backstage area. Much of ZACH’s set construction currently takes place outdoors, at the mercy of the heat and the weather. Many of ZACH’s classes and camps are currently housed in temporary, portable classrooms and have long waiting lists. modern facilities are necessary if zach is to continue to offer professional productions and answer the growing needs of the austin community.

“I’m fortunate to have an extraordinary artistic home at ZACH. The opportunity to collaborate with the artistic team is a gift beyond compare! I can’t imagine the man I’d be without the solid foundation of ZACH in my life.” Martin Burke | Actor

Well before ZACH’s production Keepin’ It Weird, ZACH was doing its part to celebrate everything that’s unique and wonderful about our city. Under the artistic direction of Dave Steakley, ZACH purposefully makes art that creates the opportunity for meaningful conversations on topics that have resonance in our community, celebrating the diversity of voices that attracts people to our city. In 2007, ZACH staged the first bilingual production of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Jesus Christ Superstar, which quickly became one of the most popular musicals in ZACH’s history, generating more email, phone calls and letters than all productions from the past 16 years combined, while growing ZACH’s diverse audience. One need only take a drive down Lamar Boulevard to experience Austin’s explosive growth. More than 60,000 cars pass ZACH every day. Downtown has 7.3 million square feet of development currently under construction, and that will bring approximately 8,500 new residents to the area.* As our city grows, so do the expectations on ZACH and its facilities. The timing is right for ZACH to experience measured growth and to meet the increasing demands of our productions and the community. Happily, the citizens of Austin support this growth, as evidenced by their enthusiastic support of Proposition 4, a bond that granted ZACH $10 million toward the creation of a new theatre. ZACH is honored to build on this momentum, backed by arts patrons and civic, community and neighborhood leaders who understand how the arts contribute to making Austin a greater city.
*Source: City of Austin Downtown Plan Joint Commission Briefing, January 9, 2008

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prop 4 gets zach halfway there
In 2006, Austin voters enthusiastically passed Proposition 4, a bond that gave ZACH $10 million toward the construction of a new theatre.

now, zach needs your support to get the rest of the way there.

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c r e at i V e

ZACH launched the national 365 Plays/365 Days festival with Pulitzer playwright Suzan-Lori Parks on Austin’s Pfluger pedestrian bridge.

made i n a U S t i n
The set for ZACH’s bilingual production of Jesus Christ Superstar was comprised of over 50 large scale mosaics created by Austin artists. This mosaic was created by scenic designer Michael B. Raiford in memory of his mother.

ZACH is a theatre for the community, but it’s hardly community theatre. For the past 20 years, ZACH has been Austin’s premier professional theatre and has actively preserved the creative capital in our city by annually employing more than 300 local actors, designers, directors, choreographers, musical directors, musicians, artists and technicians. Rather than bringing in sets and costumes from New York or Los Angeles, almost everything that goes into a ZACH production is actually made in Austin. Ninety five percent of the actors and musicians on stage live in our community. ZACH incubates original works, cultivating and producing new plays and musicals by playwrights and composers primarily from Central Texas, for maximum community involvement. ZACH’s support of creative endeavors isn’t limited to the professionals who work here. Its four educational programs serve over 50,000 students annually, more than half of whom are deemed at risk for not completing high school. Studies have shown that children who study the arts are four times more likely to be recognized for academic achievement,* while children who participate specifically in drama score 40 percent higher in written and verbal standardized tests.** ZACH’s extensive outreach and education programs spark creative potential in students young and old, offering many people their only experience with live theatre. Like Austin, we value the creative capital of each individual.

*Source: National Governors Association Center for Best Practices **Source: Champions for Change: The Impact of Art on Learning

Overland Partners Architects

ZACH’s new home on the banks of Lady Bird Lake will put the exclamation point on the city’s arts district. Designed by award-winning Overland Partners Architects, the clustered campus will hum with the synergy of having all production, education and outreach activities in one place. The cornerstone of the new campus is a state-of-the-art, 500-seat theatre with professional performance capabilities. A grand lobby with huge windows will overlook the Austin skyline and terraced steps will connect the building with the greenbelt below. Patrons will enjoy additional parking, attractive and plentiful restrooms and easily accessible bar and lounge areas. The new theatre offers efficiencies that will streamline the cost of mounting new productions. Because of the additional seats, more people will be able to see a show in a shorter period of time. ZACH has also found significant cost savings by purchasing and converting a neighboring building into a new production and rehearsal space, thus lowering the overall campus project cost by millions of dollars. The new theatre’s Karen Kuykendall Stage will include a fly tower and a reconfigurable stage with traps, allowing ZACH to mount logistically difficult productions that until now have been hosted at off-site venues. The theatre will retain the intimacy and spirit that ZACH is known for—even the back row of wide, comfortable seats will be only 60 feet from the stage. State-of-the-art acoustics and lighting will complete the theatrical experience for both actors and patrons.

ZACH’s new Production and Creativity Center on Toomey Road

Michael Hsu Design Office

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a n a U S t i n d iVa
In celebration of the extraordinary life and work of Karen Kuykendall, ZACH is honored to name the stage in the new theatre after Austin’s most beloved actress and community treasure. Remembered for performances as far-ranging as Andy Warhol in Rocky Horror to Diana Vreeland in Full Gallop, Kuykendall inspired Austin with her talent for more than five decades.











“Thank you for the positive, pro-active, hard-working, process-honoring atmosphere you have created. Never have I seen the word ‘YES’ so activated, amplified and cultivated. The YES in ZACH’s walls is as palpable as the walls themselves. That YES, I believe, will lead to something brand new, perhaps to connect with a broader more global environment as audience.” Anna Deveare Smith | Actor & Playwright


In the heart of

there’s a place that reminds the city of its

t H e Z A C H t H e At R e C A P I tA l C A M PA I g n
Just as Austin looks to ZACH for entertainment and inspiration, ZACH depends on Austin to remain a vibrant, relevant voice in the community. Today, we ask for your support. With your contribution, we will move ZACH forward and continue to serve as a home for creativity, opportunity and imagination.

plenty O’ Somethin’
ZACH’s landmark production of Porgy and Bess drew national media attention, including the cover page of The New York Times Arts and Leisure section. Staged off-site at the Austin Music Hall to accommodate technical needs and increased audience size, Porgy and Bess was seen by 1,000 people nightly during its two-week run. National Endowment for the Arts Deputy Chairman Robert Frankel attended, as did members of the Gershwin family, who lauded ZACH’s innovative staging and re-orchestration of the original score. “I am so proud of what ZACH did for our Porgy and Bess!” said Michael Strunsky, nephew of Ira Gershwin and Trustee of the Ira and Leonore Gershwin Fund.

2009 2006 2001 1998 1997 1991 1976 1972 1967 1943 1933

zach pr O dUct i O n im a ge S Front Cover Beehive Page 3 Rockin’ Christmas Party Page 4 Keepin’ It Weird Ain’t Nothin’ But the Blues Hair Page 5 Jesus Christ Superstar Page 6 365 Plays/365 Days Page 7 Alicia in Wonderland Aida Page 9 Full Gallop Page 10 Crowns Rocky Horror Porgy and Bess Back Cover Full Gallop Rockin’ Christmas Party Clean House Doubt Smokey Joe’s Cafe

UniQUe fOr

75 YearS

ZACH begins operations as the Austin little theater with popular melodramas and American classics

name changed to Austin Civic theatre where future stars like Jayne Mansfield and Mary louise Parker will be discovered

Austin Civic theatre re-named in honor of Zachary Scott, an Austinreared actor who enjoyed a successful Hollywood film career

Completion of the Kleberg Stage, an 8,000-square-foot theatre facility with a 200-seat thrust stage

ZACH’s Project InterAct begins bringing live theatre to Austinarea schools Completion of the 130-seat Whisenhunt Arena Stage, costume shop, offices and education complex. Hit shows like Beehive and Sheer Madness open Love, Janis is created at ZACH and goes on to Chicago,Cleveland and a successful off-Broadway run

tony Kushner’s epic, 6-hour Angels in America becomes the highest attended play in Austin

two world premieres: a musical Jouét by Allen Robertson transfers to Actors theatre of louisville and a play Circumference of a Squirrel transfers to los Angeles’ Mark taper Forum ZACH is included on the Austin City BOnD for $10 million toward a new theatre and Creativity Center – BOnD successfully passes! ZACH celebrates its 75th Anniversary with national recognition from The New York Times for Porgy and Bess and the largest individual contributions in its history and becomes a launching pad for future Broadway productions

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a c K n O W l e d gm e n t S & creditS Design | Clutch Creative Copywriting | Maggie Stephens Photography | Kirk R. tuck Michael Raiford Sung Park Jack thielepape/jmtimages Renderings | Overland Partners Architects Michael Hsu Design Office

za ch l ea derSh ip: Dave Steakley | Producing Artistic Director elisbeth Challener | Managing Director

t h e z a c h t h e at r e c a p i ta l c a m pa i g n

uniquely austin

uniquely zach

1510 Toomey Road Austin, Texas 78704 Phone: (512) 476-0594 Fax: (512) 476-0314 www.zachtheatre.org