NEWS AND EVENTSTHE LATEST PROJECTS
Kelowna (October 13, 2021) — While event venues across the Okanagan were closed due to the pandemic, Kelowna’s Citizens for a New Performing Arts Centre, a group of dedicated volunteers, was busy advancing a vital mission — building community momentum toward the creation of an exciting, contemporary new arts and culture complex in the city’s core. We are gratified and energized by the enthusiasm that is swirling around this important initiative, which is attracting support from artists and audiences, businesspeople and the community at large.
One of the most prominent supporters of the movement is Rosemary Thomson, the acclaimed music director and conductor of the Okanagan Symphony Orchestra. We are proud that Maestra Thomson agreed to star in our organization’s first video, explaining the mission and goals of Citizens for a New Performing Arts Centre.
• View the full three-minute video here: https://youtu.be/htbHCMtiGGs
Kelowna (March 31, 2021) — The City of Kelowna has invited consultants to step forward with expressions of interest in conducting a study on the financial aspects of building a new performing arts centre.
“We’re absolutely delighted about this development, because it signals that the City is serious about seeing this essential project move forward,” said Patricia Ainslie, founding president of Citizens for a New Performing Arts Centre in Kelowna. “This is an extremely important and promising step.”
The volunteer group, known informally as Friends of KPAC, is dedicated to rallying broad-based support for the replacement of the Kelowna Community Theatre by a larger, more modern facility that would better meet the needs of the Central Okanagan. The group, which hopes to see the new facility in place by 2026, is working with City officials, while gathering expressions of support from business, the cultural and educational sectors, and the public at large.
The City’s purchasing department recently posted a Request for Supplier Qualification (RFSQ). It aims to identify consultants who might be qualified to bid on a contract to carry out a feasibility study. The City has previously set aside up to $100,000 to examine the funding and related issues associated with building a new performing arts centre. More details on the RFSQ, which closes April 14, can be found on the City’s website.
Friends of KPAC, backed by leading cultural and other organizations in the Kelowna area, have been calling for a contemporary performing arts space that would keep pace with the city’s growth and dynamism.
“Replacing the outdated Kelowna Community Theatre is urgent,” Ainslie said, “so we encourage the City to move forward with its feasibility study at the earliest possible date.”
Kelowna (February 17, 2021) — A new non-profit organization giving voice to a wide range of community interests is launching a citizens movement to press for the creation of a new Performing Arts Centre in downtown Kelowna by 2026.
“We know the community is ready to dream big,” said Patricia Ainslie, founding president of Citizens for a New Performing Arts Centre in Kelowna. “We are confident that, with the support of businesses and individuals throughout the Central Okanagan, these dreams will give life to a vibrant showpiece in Kelowna’s Cultural District.”
Known informally as “Friends of KPAC”, the volunteer organization is advancing a plan to replace the 850-seat Kelowna Community Theatre with a new complex that would better meet the needs of performers and audiences alike. A new centre would offer more seating, spacious lobbies, better acoustics and other modern technologies, and vital amenities for the artists who will perform there.
“The KCT will always enjoy a warm spot in our hearts,” noted Ainslie, an author, art curator and historian. “But, after almost 60 years of service, our community needs and deserves more.”
Friends of KPAC recently began working with Kelowna’s municipal government to sketch out a process for the development of a new performing arts centre over the next five years, in a way that would not interrupt the operation of the community theatre during the construction phase.
At the same time, the group is enlisting the performing arts community and other stakeholders to foster broad-based and sustained business and public support for the undertaking.
After a year of planning and preliminary outreach, the organization used its inaugural general meeting Tuesday night to launch its website, which highlights the breadth of support the initiative has already garnered from across the region’s cultural community.
Directors also agreed that a key focus for the year ahead will be to build supportive alliances with the many businesses and other interest groups that would benefit directly from the dynamism that the new facility would spur in Kelowna’s central core.
HELP MAKE THIS DREAM A REALITY
Visit our Community Support page to see how a new Performing Arts Centre will benefit the people and the businesses of Kelowna and the Central Okanagan.
And please consider becoming a supporter. Just sign up to our mailing list, and we’ll keep you informed of the progress of this important initiative.
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