The web site of the Surlight Theatre is still proclaiming “Broadway at the beach since 1950.” But in reality, that time is over. The non-profit professional Beach Haven theater announced this morning that it has filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, and will close.
“This was an extremely difficult decision, and it was not made without trying every possible action to save the theatre we all love,” wrote the theater’s board of trustees in a letter to patrons, donors and volunteers. “Over the past few months, the trustees and Surflight staff have worked tirelessly to improve the theatre’s financial condition through a variety of means, including appeals for emergency funding, seeking refinancing of our burdensome debt and making cost reductions. Unfortunately, these efforts were unsuccessful.”
The theater’s long-term debt is $2.6 million. An effort to raise $600,000, in order to make a 2015 season possible, was launched in October, but was unsuccessful.
The 450-seat theater offered six mainstage shows last year, as well as children’s theatre and concerts.
The theater’s Show Place Ice Cream Parlour will also close, and its Surflight-To-Go traveling troupe will cease operations.