Executive Director for Prescott Center for the Arts
By Tara Fort
When Robyn Allen and her husband chose Prescott as the perfect place to retire from their active Phoenix lives, she never thought the move would lead her to a career she’d been preparing for her entire life. But when opportunity called, Allen followed the dream—and six deer in the driveway of their new home helped seal the deal.
As a founding member of the Algonquin Theater Company, Allen’s career is vast. “I’ve done theater my whole life as an actress, theater manager and director. At the time, I never realized that I was drawn toward a positon in theater management.”
In February 2016, Allen held an interim positon for Prescott Center for the Arts (PCA), an organization that has been “Your Home for the Arts” for over 47 years in Prescott. Among the five finalists in a national search, she was hired as Executive Director in June 2016. Allen embraces the transition: “My goals include developing new sources of funding, encouraging creative and collaborative programming, and building community partnerships to preserve this historical arts organization.” Board Member Catherine Hahn could not be more pleased, “We are extremely proud Robyn is the face of PCA. She is a powerhouse and a complete joy to work with.”
Allen loves being involved in Prescott’s community theater and shares that, “Everyone has a passion for theater in a community like ours. Even more exciting is the talent. Artists come from all over the United States, which gives us a huge range of professional talent on the stage and in the Gallery. It just blows me away! I’m always surprised at how far people will come to be a part of our theater.” Allen is quick to point out that PCA’s staff of three full-time and four part-time employees could not do what they do without the volunteers, a base that is “hundreds, if not thousands” strong, and includes everyone from actors, directors, make-up artists and set designers. Getting involved with PCA is easy through the Usher Program (usher a show in exchange for tickets), various support memberships, and by adding to the $10,000 Matching Funds Campaign currently taking place—for every dollar donated, a match will be made.
Allen embodies the “fun” in fundraising with innovative and creative ideas for reaching a wider audience. A “High Tea” in October kicked off a themed fundraiser based on the movie and play, Calendar Girls. The women of PCA created their own tastefully-crafted calendar – 100% of all profits benefited the YRMC BreastCare Center. Allen herself is featured in the calendar as Ms. October and in February’s Mainstage PCA feature she will reprise the role held by Helen Mirren in the film. But, that’s not all. From Ghost Talk in October that benefits West Yavapai Guidance Clinic, to honoring Annual Student Art Month in March, PCA continues to give back and support locally. Allen states that, “Word of mouth and cross-marketing is strong. My view is this: ‘What can I do for you in exchange for what you can do to help us?’”
Allen is particularly excited about PCA’s Inaugural Gala taking place March 18, 2017. The “Magic of Vegas” with guest of honor Mayor Harry Oberg boasts an evening of dancing and dining. Music will be provided by top Las Vegas entertainer Wes Winters, a pianist so talented a room was named after him in the Liberace Museum! The evening will showcase remarkable performers, and a silent auction.
Says Allen, “I believe my entire career has prepared me for, and led me to, this position.” For Allen—and for PCA—the journey has just begun.
For more information about the offerings, programs, musical and visual arts showcases, visit PCA’s user-friendly website at www.PCA-az.net.