Salt Lake Acting Company's historic building, nestled in the Marmalade Hill neighborhood of Salt Lake City, is charming and part of the SLAC experience. However, that experience is not the same for everyone. For patrons who use wheelchairs or accommodations to get upstairs, participating in our work can be a considerable challenge. For years we have watched patrons struggle to get into our Upstairs Theatre. Yet, despite these challenges, patrons keep coming back. One of our subscribers said on the way to the Upstairs Theatre in the chair lift, "Take me to heaven, that's what I call SLAC, heaven." Since 2015, we have made strides towards becoming more accessible. We updated our old chair lift, which removed barriers for some of our audience. However, the lift still falls short for accommodating those who cannot transfer from their wheelchair.
As part of Salt Lake Acting Company's accessibility initiative, we are pleased to announce the Amberlee Accessibility Fund.
Created in honor of Amberlee Hatton-Ward, this campaign will raise funds to make SLAC's Upstairs Theatre fully-accessible by installing an elevator in the lobby. Amberlee and her "little buddies" began attending our children's production in 2014. Amberlee used a wheelchair and an alternate method of communication. Because of the limitations of our building, Amberlee was carried into the theatre by her friends and family. Our production of A YEAR WITH FROG AND TOAD left a smile on Amberlee's face and had such an impact on her that attending became an annual tradition, despite the added barrier of the production being in the Upstairs Theatre.
In December of 2019, Amberlee's mother, Shauna, held a celebration of life in Amberlee's memory at Salt Lake Acting Company's production of PETE THE CAT. We are honored that our work touches our audience so profoundly that patrons attend despite the extra challenges our historic building presents.
Generous support is also being lent to the project by ASSIST, a non-profit community design center that leverages architecture, planning, and construction to provide equitable housing and transportation choices for all communities.
All of us at Salt Lake Acting Company are deeply committed to sharing our art with all audiences. It is our goal to install an elevator in our lobby by September of 2020, removing barriers for those who use wheelchairs from being active participants in our work. If you'd like to contribute, you may visit our donation page or call 801-363-7522.
During this unprecedented time, we would like to thank our resilient audiences for their continued support and patience as we join the rest of Utah in determining how to move forward over the coming months. In a pandemic-free world, the Saturday's Voyeur team would have gathered May 4th for its first rehearsal. Instead, we must announce that due to the State of Utah's current public health guidelines pertaining to social distancing, Saturday's Voyeur will not be produced this summer. We stand by all efforts that support continued public health in our community.
Now, some good news. We're spending this summer preparing the theatre for a safe and healthy return in the fall. This includes the announcement of a new in-lobby elevator, which will make our Upstairs Theatre fully wheelchair accessible! It's being funded in part by the newly-created Amberlee Accessibility Fund. Read more about about the memory and legacy of one of SLAC's most treasured patrons here.
Current Voyeur ticket holders will be contacted directly by SLAC staff over the coming weeks to discuss ticketing options. They include:
Those ticket holders who wish to convert their tickets into a gift certificate or donation can also do so now by clicking the button below. Patrons who are overseeing previously-purchased sets of group tickets can contact SLAC's Group Sales Coordinator, Natalie Keezer, at 801-363-7522 or .
We wish each of you a healthy summer and look forward to sharing more information about our upcoming 50th season within the next few months. It will certainly be a landmark season in every way. In the meantime, be on the lookout for some lighthearted digital content from SLAC over the summer (more on that to come...) and please continue to share your COVID-19 stories with us.
See you this fall.
The Staff of Salt Lake Acting Company