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COVID-19 Announcement from Footlights/Marcus Promotions



COVID-19 Announcement from Footlights/Marcus Promotions
Photo Credit: Sarah Sallmann

To all of our Friends, Performing Arts Clients, Advertisers, and Vendors… 

This COVID-19 situation we are all facing is unprecedented.  Everything is shut down and our world has come to a screeching halt.  Marcus Promotions/Footlights has been dramatically affected by this pandemic…we have already laid off design and production staff as there are no Footlights programs to design, print and deliver.  Our arts colleagues have closed productions mid-run or cancelled those yet to open over the coming eight weeks.  We don’t know how long this will last or what things will look like on the other side but we remain optimistic.

There are so many unknowns at this time and hard to not be concerned.  Some venues still have hopes to re-mount closed or cancelled shows.  Our hearts go out to them as they struggle to salvage their seasons! The sad reality is that there are many great works of art that won’t be seen. There are only so many months in the season and windows to work with based upon artist’s availability and venue schedules and commitments.  We have faith that this experience will strengthen us and strengthen our relationships while we stick together.

Many cancelled shows have Footlights programs that have already been printed and delivered.  We have incurred costs on the production side as well as recognize loss of advertising on the other side.

To our arts clients, we will not be assessing cancellation fees and burdening you with additional hardship.  We are here for you and want to help make lemonade out of the lemons that we all have been served.  From tragedy, comes ingenuity…Some companies are recording their productions for their patrons to still view online.  For those, we will be supplying a digital Footlights program for patrons to enjoy.

To our advertisers, we will honor your missed advertising placements at a later date.  We are not issuing refunds at this time with how quickly everything is changing. We apologize for any inconvenience; once we know what events are permanently cancelled, we will assess credits based upon the exposure lost.


To the arts patrons, we are saddened that you will not experience theater for some time.  The theater can be a great escape to reality and we sure could use that right about now!  During this surreal interim, we ask that you be generous and understanding.  Please consider donating the ticket that you purchased for the performance that you didn’t see and go a step further and consider an additional donation to help ensure that the theater doors remain open when this crisis passes.

Lastly, in the wake of show cancellations and the uncertainty of when we’ll return to “normal,” we’ve made the hard decision to cancel the 2020 Footlights People’s Choice Awards in Milwaukee. We are beyond thankful to all of the artists who have already been helping us in the planning process. We don’t want to celebrate a season that’s been cut short, and instead plan to execute a relief event later in the summer to help rebuild our arts community.  Details to come.

While we focus on frivolous shortages of toilet paper, consider a true tragedy of life without the arts.

Thank you for your patience and your understanding.  We leave you with these lyrics from the Broadway musical, Next to Normal.

Day after day,
We'll find the will to find our way.
Knowing that the darkest skies will someday see the sun.
When our long night is done,
There will be light.

Steve Marcus
President and Publisher

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