Montford Park Players Receives Largest Gift in its History

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The Montford Park Players, North Carolina’s longest running Shakespeare Festival, is pleased to announce the receipt of a gift from the Rakay Family Foundation Fund in the amount of $175,000.00 toward its capital campaign for the renovation of the Hazel Robinson Amphitheatre.

Mr. and Mrs. Rakay are summer residents of Asheville and have attended numerous productions at the Amphitheatre. Mr. Rakay remarked on the professional quality of MPP’s productions, and especially singled out Rhonda Parker’s production of Hamlet in 2013 as “one of the finest productions he had seen anywhere.”

According to John Russell, Managing Director of the Montford Park Players, “Mr. and Mrs. Rakay’s generous gift will enable us to begin construction of new audience seating immediately, with the remaining work to resume at the conclusion of our 42nd summer season in September, with a completion date of April 1, 2015. Our plans include better sight lines for our audiences, new and improved seating to handle the much larger audiences we’ve experienced in the last few years, a wheelchair-accessible audience path, reconstruction of the stagehouse with a second story and Elizabethan-style roof, and a new welcome center where our guests can enjoy refreshments indoors and watch the show on a wide-screen monitor.” He continued by thanking the Buncombe Country Tourism Development Authority for its grant of $125,000, and the many donors who have contributed to this project, and who have made the reconstruction of the 30-year old Hazel Robinson Amphitheatre a reality.

Russell added, “Fundraising will continue for this project in order to provide for the future needs of MPP and our 21st century audiences, and will include, among other events, our 2nd Annual Masquerade Ball, to be held Nov. 6 at The Venue on North Market Street.”

For more information contact:

John Russell, Managing Director

Tel. 828-254-5146


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