News & Events

News: Stratford Festival raises a record $110,782 for The AFC – almost double the amount raised in 2015

Stratford, Ont. – January 25, 2017 – The AFC is thrilled to announce that Stratford Festival raised a record $110,782 for The AFC in 2016.

Individual giving by company members through payroll donations, audience collections at thirteen different performances and a benefit performance of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe raised funds to assist entertainment professionals facing crisis situations.

With the kind collaboration of artistic director Antoni Cimolino, C.M., and executive director Anita Gaffney, company members gave curtain speeches at performances of A Chorus Line, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, The Hypochondriac, Macbeth, A Little Night Music, Shakespeare in Love, John Gabriel Borkman, All My Sons, As You Like It, Breath of Kings: Rebelllion and Bunny that inspired audiences to give an incredible $55,834!

“Without our talented company members, we couldn’t offer anything on our stages, let alone productions of the unsurpassed quality our audiences expect. That’s why we’re proud to support The AFC. It really is a lifeline for theatre workers and other entertainment professionals, helping them bounce back from potentially career-ending situations such as illness or injury so that they can continue to do the great work that means so much to all of us.” said Cimolino.

“On behalf of everyone who will turn to The AFC to lift the burden that illness, injury or some other unforeseen emergency can bring, I extend my deepest gratitude,” said The AFC’s director emerita Seana McKenna, who led the payroll donation and audience collection fundraising initiative. “I am overwhelmed by the generosity of everyone involved: Antoni and Anita, without whom this wouldn’t have been possible; the actors who spoke so passionately about how The AFC helps their colleagues through tough times; the performers who collected funds in full costume and makeup; those who sorted and counted the money; everyone who extended their day by waiting to finish their wig, wardrobe, stage management, crew and front-of-house duties until the collections were done; and of course, all our amazing Stratford patrons who so readily responded to the call to give.”

The AFC also recognizes and thanks the M.E.H. Foundation for its special contribution to the Stratford Festival fundraising initiative, Seana McKenna who led this extraordinarily successful campaign and AFC board member Steve Ross who tirelessly supported her efforts.

Stratford Festival is North America’s largest classical repertory theatre company. Each season, Stratford Festival presents a dozen or more productions in four distinctive venues. The company produces classics, contemporary dramas and musicals, with special emphasis on the plays of Shakespeare.

The AFC is the lifeline for Canada’s entertainment industry. Through compassionate and confidential support, The AFC helps Canadian entertainment professionals maintain their health, dignity and ability to work. In the last 24 months, The AFC has distributed over $1 million in emergency financial aid to help entertainment professionals working in all aspects of film & TV, music, theatre and dance.



David Hope

Executive Director

The AFC – the lifeline for Canada’s entertainment industry



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