Peninsula Players Theatre Announces $20,000 Grant Award from The Shubert Foundation

Peninsula Players Theatre, America’s oldest professional resident summer theater and Door County’s theatrical icon, is proud to announce it has received a $20,000 award from The Shubert Foundation. The Shubert Foundation has awarded a record total of $32 million to 556 not-for-profit performing arts organizations across the United States since its inception.

The Shubert Foundation provides operational grants only to organizations that have demonstrated an extraordinary commitment to the performing arts, established artistic and administrative track records, as well as a pattern of fiscal responsibility.

This award marks the fifth year in a row Peninsula Players Theatre has received support from the Shubert Foundation.

The Shubert Foundation is dedicated to sustaining and advancing live performing arts on a national level and is especially interested in providing support to professional resident theaters and dance companies that develop and produce new American works. The Shubert Foundation examined Peninsula Players’ commitment to new play developments, its artistic achievement, its contributions to the field of professional theater and its internship program.

“The Shubert Foundation and its name are synonymous with excellence in American Theater,” said Managing Director Brian Kelsey. “As the most prestigious arts granting organization in the country, it a great honor for us to be recognized this highly respected organization. This investment also reflects positively on the long-term health of Door County’s artistic community as a whole.

“The vital support that the Shubert Foundation provides helps to sustain and advance the performing arts across the nation. We are honored and very thankful that they recognize our commitment to create, develop and produce new works and our belief that the Peninsula Players does and should have an impact on our community.”

The Shubert Foundation does not earmark its awards; all allocations are unrestricted. “Our longstanding practice of providing help in the form of general operating support remains unchanged,” stated Shubert Foundation President Michael I. Sovern on the Shubert’s website. “We are convinced that talented artists and administrators are best able to decide how to use the funds we grant.”

The Shubert Foundation, Inc., was established in New York City in 1945 by Lee and J.J. Shubert in memory of their brother Sam. It is the sole shareholder of The Shubert Organization, Inc., which currently owns/operates 21 theaters, 17 on Broadway and one off-Broadway theater. It is the nation’s largest private foundation dedicated to unrestricted funding of nonprofit theaters, dance companies, professional theater training programs and related service agencies.

“The honor affirms what Brian and I, along with our Board of Directors, have known for a long time – that patrons and supporters of Peninsula Players cherish and appreciate the artistry, craftsmanship and theatrical works the theater has produced for 85 years,” said Artistic Director Greg Vinkler.

Peninsula Players was awarded a $10,000 grant in 2016 and a $15,000 in 2017 and in 2018. The $20,000 grant matches the award the theater received in 2019. Peninsula Players Theatre is thrilled to be a recipient of such a prestigious honor.

“Peninsula Players is thrilled to play an important part in creating and sustaining a vibrant arts community in Door County,” said Kelsey. “The arts provide a distinctive, powerful contribution to a vibrant, inclusive and empathetic society, which we believe Door County to be.”

Peninsula Players is celebrating its 85th season in 2020. Founded in 1935 by brother and sister Richard and Caroline Fisher, the theater has produced more than 500 staged works, including world premières, dramas, comedies and musicals. Recent world premières at Peninsula Players include its current offering “A Trick of the Light,” by Peter Moore; “Now and Then,” by Sean Grennan; “The Actuary” by Steven Peterson, “The Outsider” (formerly “A Real Lulu”) by Paul Slade Smith; “Making God Laugh” and “The Tin Woman,” also by Sean Grennan; “Once a Ponzi Time” by Joe Foust, and of note, the regional première of “Ben Butler” (formerly “Butler”) by Richard Strand, “Alabama Story” by Kenneth Jones and last autumn’s Midwest première of Mark Germaine’s “George Washington’s Teeth.” The world première of “The Gentleman Thief” by Mark Brown slated for this autumn has been postponed due to the ongoing worldwide health pandemic.

Peninsula Players is a unique professional theater known for its diverse productions, continuing loyalty to a resident company and its beautiful setting on 16 wooded acres along the cedar-lined shores of Green Bay. In the past 85 years, the theater has become a Door County landmark and its cornerstone arts institution, attracting audience members from throughout Wisconsin and across the country.

Ticket sales, individual donations, show sponsorships and playbill advertising cover most of the theater’s cost of operations. For more information about how to support the theater in these challenging times, visit or call Development and Events Manager Danielle Szmanda at (920) 868-3287 ext. 3.

The 2020 season at Peninsula Players has been altered; its summer performances are canceled. Intentions are to produce “Rounding Third,” a comedy featuring two very different little league coaches, by Richard Dresser September 9 to October 18. For more information on the Peninsula Players 2020 season, visit or call the Box Office at (920) 868-3287.