Helen and Andy Spriet donate $1 Million to the Grand Theatre
Largest individual gift in the Grand's History
London, ONTARIO - March 9, 2017 — The Grand Theatre is thrilled to announce that Helen and Andy Spriet, philanthropic leaders in London, have committed an historic $1,000,000 to support the work of the theatre. This donation marks the largest individual gift in the Grand’s history.
At the Grand’s 2017/18 season launch today, Executive Director Deb Harvey announced the renaming of the theatre’s main stage to the Spriet Stage in recognition of the gift.
“The Grand Theatre has always held a special place for us. Over the years we have been inspired by other London families, like the Iveys, who have shown their leadership and leveraged impact with significant gifts to local causes and organizations that matter to the community. We had planned to leave a legacy gift to the Grand but the opportunity to see our donation have an immediate and lasting impact for all Londoners was really exciting for us,” said Helen Spriet who served on the Board of Directors of the Grand Theatre from 2008 to 2015.
“Since the arrival of our new Artistic Director, Dennis Garnhum, we are in a time of renaissance here at the Grand. This transformational gift will be instrumental in expanding the theatre’s programming and building new community initiatives,” noted Deb Harvey. “Donations of this size in London, and in particular in the arts community, are rare. We are humbled by the trust instilled in us by Helen and Andy and what this will mean in terms of our growth in the coming years.”
About The Grand Theatre
The Grand Theatre, a community hub of creativity, culture, and imagination, stages award-winning work from around the world and Canada under Artistic Director Dennis Garnhum and Executive Director Deb Harvey. This stunning historic theatre, with one of the last remaining proscenium arches in Canada, features two stages, the Spriet Stage (839 seats) and the McManus Stage (144 seats). The Grand has developed several new innovative programs: COMPASS, a New Play Development Program designed to put world premieres on stage; 100 Schools, a school outreach program called in which a production tours throughout the region at no cost to the school; 1000 Seats which offers complimentary tickets to first-time theatre goers; and the High School Project. The Grand Theatre season runs from September to May.
Kate Rapson, Communications Manager, the Grand Theatre