When I was in high school and college I worked with a small professional non-equity theater company on the South Side of Chicago called Argyle Gargoyle Productions.

One of our ongoing challenges, since we didn't have our own space, was finding theaters to stage our shows. A task that as our company's mission and ambitions grew, became harder to do. Impact Arts hopes to solve that type of problem for Warrensburg area arts groups.

With Project Vision Impact Arts "aims to build a new state-of-the-art cultural arts center with the space and equipment necessary to teach and perform a wide variety of the arts."

The concept plan for a facility at South Ridgeview Drive and State Highway DD includes a lobby, a large theater that seats 600-800 people, a black box theater that seats 150 people, a scene shop, a green room, musical performance spaces, dance studios, gathering spaces, retail space, offices and restrooms.

Impact Arts vision for the spaces is all encompassing:

Theatres will be available for public, private, school, and governmental organizations to use for the furtherance of the arts. They will be able to serve a wide variety of performances including dance, theatre, music, stand-up comedy, etc."

The rest of the space will be devoted to dance, music and theater instruction and provide meeting space available for a variety of uses that benefit and further the arts, health and wellness of the community:

The performing arts center will also comprise numerous varied multi-purpose rooms which will be available for a wide range of uses. These uses vary from education to small performances, but are all geared towards the furtherance of Impact Arts’ charitable and educational mission.

Impact Arts says the cost of the facility is $24 million dollars and funding for the project will come from a variety of sources. $9 million dollars will come from community, corporate and foundation sources. $15 million will come from a major foundation focused on building arts centers nationwide. And grants from Missouri and the Federal Government may be available if necessary.

The theater company I was a part of growing up benefited greatly from private donations, grants and the generosity of those who believed in the arts. It made an impact in my life, and the lives of many others who performed, helped behind the scenes, or just enjoyed our performances. It is my hope that support of this endeavor will bring the same opportunity and enrichment to people in our community.

You can learn more about Impact Arts and Project Vision here.


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