Hawaii Theatre Center in the black again

September 23, 2002

The Hawaii Theatre Center has concluded a sixth year in the black and paid down its debt some more.

HTC President Sarah Richards told the annual meeting of the board of director that the 2001-2002 season, the organization's 79th year, ended with revenues above expenses by $178,000 and debt reduced to $1.5 million.

Richards also said the $10.5 million capital campaign is in good shape after a $1 million state Legislature appropriation and a $500,000 Kresge Foundation challenge grant. The capital campaign, within $2 million of completion, aims to retire the organization's bank loan and restore the exterior of the historic theater with, among other things, a movie marquee.

More than 130,000 patrons attended 160 performances at the theater last year, the board was told at its meeting at the Kahala Mandarin last week.

The board re-elected Robert Midkiff chairman, and added three board members including Kit Dobelle, wife of University of Hawaii Evan Dobelle.

Also voted onto the board: Bank of Hawaii vice chairwoman Donna Tanoue, First Hawaiian Bank senior vice president Koren Dreher, Ernest & Young managing partner Larry Rodrigues, Box-to-Go Ltd. CFO Kenwei Chong, attorney Rick Fried and community volunteers Susan Kobayashi and Sarah Fargo. Attorney Martin Anderson joined the advisory board.

For mainland readers, the Hawaii Theatre is a very old theater in downtown Honolulu that was rescued from the wrecking ball. Its good acoustics support a variety of artistic activities. Last winter two editions of Garrison Keillor's "A Prairie Home Companion" were performed there.

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