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California Music Theatre

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ENTERTAINMENT
May 24, 1992 | DON SHIRLEY
A post-mortem, please, from Gary Davis, who co-created and headed Pasadena-based California Music Theatre throughout its five-year-plus history. Beset by a debt that was close to $2 million, according to Davis, the organization folded last week. "We never had the cash to get the word out," Davis said last week. "We had a deficit from the day we opened our doors, and we were unable to get the revenue we needed for marketing. We were simply paralyzed by our payables."
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ENTERTAINMENT
November 12, 2008 | Mike Boehm, Boehm is a Times staff writer.
The blowback from last week's passage of Proposition 8, which prohibits same-sex marriage in California, has hit the California Musical Theatre, a major nonprofit stage company in Sacramento, following the revelation via the Web that its artistic director gave $1,000 to back the state constitutional amendment. Among those weighing in with dismay over Scott Eckern's donation are Tony winners Jeff Whitty (who wrote the book for "Avenue Q") and Marc Shaiman (composer and co-lyricist of "Hairspray")
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ENTERTAINMENT
March 31, 1988 | SYLVIE DRAKE, Times Theater Writer
Rumors that the California Music Theatre, now in its second season, might be in financial trouble were dismissed as no more than routine growing pains by artistic director Gary Davis. "We're here and it's business as usual," Davis said Tuesday. "There have been rocky times when we've had to do some creative asking. But I knew that (getting established) would take two or three years."
ENTERTAINMENT
December 19, 1993 | DON SHIRLEY
Strange but true: A major new musical theater, operating with a $4-million annual budget, is about to open in recession-strapped Southern California. And it won't focus on the old chestnuts that always attract an audience, but rather on work that's new to Southern California. "It has certain financial risks," said Lars Hansen of his company's venture at the newly renovated, 1,462-seat Alex Theatre in Glendale. "We're not playing the Big 15. But we think of L.A. as a major, sophisticated market.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 12, 1987 | DON SHIRLEY
Gary Davis has directed six Southern California productions of "The Desert Song," according to the program for number six, the California Music Theatre staging at Pasadena Civic Auditorium. By now, he has the venerable Sigmund Romberg operetta down pat. Everything is in its place. Nothing stands out. Perhaps Davis deserves a medal for persistence. But questions arise: Why would anyone want to see this thing six times, let alone direct it?
ENTERTAINMENT
July 4, 1991 | DON SHIRLEY, TIMES STAFF WRITER
California Music Theatre is moving to the Raymond Theatre in Old Pasadena, four blocks northwest of its former home at Pasadena Civic Auditorium. The new venue seats 1,910--approximately 1,000 fewer than the Pasadena Civic. Artistic director Gary Davis said actors will no longer have to wear body mikes at the new hall. Critics of CMT productions have often chided the Pasadena Civic's sound system and lack of intimacy.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 4, 1988 | SYLVIE DRAKE, Times Theater Writer
The California Music Theatre, poised to begin performances tonight of "Strike Up the Band" (the George and Ira Gershwin/George S. Kaufman show opens officially Saturday at the Pasadena Civic), has just announced its 1989 season.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 25, 1991 | DON SHIRLEY, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Pasadena-based California Music Theatre must raise $250,000 by the end of February to open its season with "My Fair Lady" on March 6--and another $250,000 by March 30 in order to complete the season as scheduled, theater officials say. A long-running dispute with the Musicians Union and an unexpected pay raise for stage crews at Pasadena Civic Auditorium, which California Music Theatre rents for its productions, were cited as the reasons for a $186,000 shortfall from the planned budget.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 16, 1992 | DON SHIRLEY, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Barring a last-minute miracle, Pasadena-based California Music Theatre will go out of business next week. The organization has a debt "well in excess of $1 million" and "an inability to refinance some of our debt," said Richard Fiedler, board chairman. "The last straw," he added, was a poorly attended and subscribed benefit last Saturday at the organization's home since last summer, the Raymond Theatre in Pasadena's Old Town.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 31, 1990 | DON SHIRLEY, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Should California Music Theatre remain in Pasadena? That's the biggest question raised by the organization's managing director, James Blackman, in the wake of a Pasadena Arts Commission decision to reject a grant application from the group. "Maybe we should go somewhere else," declared Blackman. "There doesn't seem to be an incentive to stay here. I feel like the city is my enemy."
ENTERTAINMENT
June 13, 1993 | DON SHIRLEY
When Pasadena-based California Music Theatre collapsed early in 1992, the future of fully professional musical theater in that area looked bleak. But now two new series plan to fill the gap. First to start, next fall, will be a season of musicals at the former home of California Music Theatre, Pasadena Civic Auditorium. "Broadway at the Pasadena Civic" is a joint venture of a nonprofit producer--Theatre League Inc.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 24, 1992 | DON SHIRLEY
A post-mortem, please, from Gary Davis, who co-created and headed Pasadena-based California Music Theatre throughout its five-year-plus history. Beset by a debt that was close to $2 million, according to Davis, the organization folded last week. "We never had the cash to get the word out," Davis said last week. "We had a deficit from the day we opened our doors, and we were unable to get the revenue we needed for marketing. We were simply paralyzed by our payables."
ENTERTAINMENT
May 16, 1992 | DON SHIRLEY, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Barring a last-minute miracle, Pasadena-based California Music Theatre will go out of business next week. The organization has a debt "well in excess of $1 million" and "an inability to refinance some of our debt," said Richard Fiedler, board chairman. "The last straw," he added, was a poorly attended and subscribed benefit last Saturday at the organization's home since last summer, the Raymond Theatre in Pasadena's Old Town.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 9, 1991 | DON SHIRLEY
A picket line paraded up and down the Yellow Brick Road over the weekend. A handful of Actors' Equity members carried signs and passed out fliers in front of the Raymond Theatre in Pasadena, where California Music Theatre was opening "The Wizard of Oz." "Tonight you will be seeing an amateur production," read a statement in the flier, "even though . . . you may have been led to believe this was a professional company."
ENTERTAINMENT
July 4, 1991 | DON SHIRLEY, TIMES STAFF WRITER
California Music Theatre is moving to the Raymond Theatre in Old Pasadena, four blocks northwest of its former home at Pasadena Civic Auditorium. The new venue seats 1,910--approximately 1,000 fewer than the Pasadena Civic. Artistic director Gary Davis said actors will no longer have to wear body mikes at the new hall. Critics of CMT productions have often chided the Pasadena Civic's sound system and lack of intimacy.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 25, 1991 | DON SHIRLEY, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Pasadena-based California Music Theatre must raise $250,000 by the end of February to open its season with "My Fair Lady" on March 6--and another $250,000 by March 30 in order to complete the season as scheduled, theater officials say. A long-running dispute with the Musicians Union and an unexpected pay raise for stage crews at Pasadena Civic Auditorium, which California Music Theatre rents for its productions, were cited as the reasons for a $186,000 shortfall from the planned budget.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 31, 1988 | BARBARA ISENBERG
It all started with a vote. Executives at California Music Theatre stuffed programs for last year's "Call Me Madam" with a ballot asking theatergoers to help select the following season's shows. And every night, recalls CMT artistic director Gary Davis, the winner was the same: "Strike Up the Band." They got their wish. Starting previews Thursday (with an official opening Saturday), "Strike Up the Band" plays first the Pasadena Civic Auditorium (through Aug.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 23, 1988 | JOHN VOLAND, Arts and entertainment reports from The Times, national and international news services and the nation's press
Together again: Tom Bosley and Donny Most of TV's "Happy Days" fame will appear in "Strike Up the Band," the California Music Theatre revival of the George and Ira Gershwin musical, set to play the Pasadena Civic Auditorium, Orange County Performing Arts Center and the Music Center later this summer. The cast will also feature Avery Schreiber.
NEWS
August 9, 1990 | KAREN E. KLEIN
To Ron Miller and Ken Hirsch, one note means everything. So when the California Music Theatre in Pasadena wanted to produce the world premiere of their musical, "Clothespins and Dreams," they agreed--with one condition. "In our contract, we wrote in that not one word or one note could be changed without our permission," Miller, the lyricist, recalled. "We had a lot of paranoia about it."
NEWS
July 22, 1990 | KAREN E. KLEIN
Keeping with its custom of producing rarely seen plays, the California Music Theatre has dusted off a Gilbert and Sullivan spoof on the British Parliament, as told through a love story between a fairy and a mortal. "Iolanthe," an 1890s comic operetta, is being staged at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium through July 29. The nonprofit theater company specializes in putting on rare musicals with professional casts, said spokesman Mike Pippi. "We are dedicated to new shows and seldom-presented works.
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