BOSTON, MA – South Shore Playhouse Associates Inc., the non-profit responsible for presenting the South Shore Music Circus, has been awarded a $250,000 grant by the Mass Cultural Council. In total, 52 non-profit and municipally-owned performing arts centers across Massachusetts will receive $3.34M to help mitigate the challenges they face when directly competing with resort casinos to book touring artists.
“The organization has been a phenomenal supporter of the arts for over 60 years and it’s great to know they received the maximum allowable grant award so they may continue to do so,” said Senator Patrick O’Connor (R-Weymouth). “Although performing arts center are currently closed due to COVID-19, this funding will help them attract and pay touring artists when it’s safe to reopen.”
For decades, the South Shore Music Circus and its sister venue, the Cape Cod Melody Tent, have been presenting world-class entertainment in the scenic Massachusetts coastal communities of Cohasset and Hyannis. The only two continuously-operated tent theatres in the contiguous United States, the Music Circus and Melody Tent are owned and operated by the South Shore Playhouse Associates, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to encouraging and supporting the arts, and cultural and educational organizations throughout the communities of the South Shore and Cape Cod.
With a colorful history dating back to its humble beginning in 1932 in Cohasset, one interwoven with the fabric of summer theatre history on the east coast, their theatres have emerged as popular destinations for patrons and performers alike, providing a relaxed ambiance and intimate theatre experience where every seat is within 50 feet of the stage.
“When the Legislature considered the operation of resort-style casinos in Massachusetts almost a decade ago many were concerned with unintended consequences. While the influx of new gaming revenues into state coffers and the creation of new jobs was anticipated and welcome, many predicted performing arts centers would lose access to acts once they began competing with casinos to attract and book nationally-touring artists. This program was envisioned by the Legislature to protect and preserve the ability of those venues to compete,” said Anita Walker, Executive Director, Mass Cultural Council. “Mass Cultural Council is proud to administer this program, fulfilling the Legislature’s vision by making these mitigation funds available to non-profit and municipally-owned performing arts centers.”
Senator Patrick O’Connor represents the Plymouth and Norfolk district, which includes the towns of Cohasset, Duxbury, Hingham, Hull, Marshfield, Norwell, Scituate, and Weymouth. Sen. O’Connor and his staff may be reached at the State House via telephone at 617-722-1646 or by email at Patrick.O’[email protected].