act • inspire• connect

Since 1974, Portland Stage has been telling stories that promote a deeper sense of what it means to be human.  

Drawing from our past, our present, and our future, we create productions that are innovative, of the moment, and relevant to our community.

We seek to engage our MAINSTAGE audiences in an active, meaningful shared experience. Now more than ever, our community needs a place that invites us to view the world from another’s perspective, building empathy and a sense of belonging.

Each MAINSTAGE season at Portland Stage involves:

  • over 250 live performances
  • over 50,000 audience members from across New England
  • over 100 professional theater artists who handcraft our productions from the ground up

As we improve our facility and build our endowment, our productions will engage more artists and audiences than ever before.

Our Education Programs, comprised of four core programs led by professionally trained Teaching Artists, are designed to grow with students as they progress through all grade-levels. 

Our teaching philosophy highlights process over product, deepening students’ ability to analyze, synthesize and think critically.

We seek to build endowment resources to support growing the audiences, artists, and classic plays of the future through our EDUCATION and NEW WORK PROGRAMS.

Each year, our EDUCATION PROGRAMS create over 14,000 unique educational experiences by reaching:

  • 10,000 students in grades K-12
  • 750 teachers
  • 70 schools 
  • 40 towns across Maine

Our NEW WORK PROGRAMS support our region’s playwrights through the: Clauder Competition, New England’s most prestigious new play competition; Little Festival of the Unexpected, an incubator for new plays in development; Commissions of new plays.

These programs have resulted in plays like John Cariani’s ALMOST, MAINE and Monica Wood’s PAPERMAKER, which both premiered on our stage and have since been produced across the country and around the world.

An increased endowment will help us maintain and expand these crucial programs that inspire creativity and collaboration in our community and beyond.

Improving our facility will make it possible for us to continue connecting with our community through the work on our stage.

We seek to be VISIBLE and ACCESSIBLE by inviting our community in to participate in our vibrant programming. 

We will improve VISIBILITY by creating a new marquee and façade – a vibrant gateway to Portland’s arts district that reflects the excitement and energy of our programs.

We will increase ACCESSIBILITY by repositioning a new elevator, Box Office, and lobby. This will improve and streamline the audience experience, and ensure that navigating our space is easy, safe, and comfortable for all patrons.

As we improve our spaces, we plan to pay down our mortgage, generating $90,000 in cash reserves each year that can be reinvested in our programs.


  • SPRING 2019 – Feasibility Study COMPLETED

  • FALL 2019 – Quiet Phase BEGAN

  • FALL 2021 – $4M Benchmark REACHED

  • SUMMER 2022 – Public Phase BEGINS

  • SUMMER 2023 – Construction BEGINS

  • FALL 2023 – 50th Mainstage Season BEGINS


As we are MAKING AN ENTRANCE, Portland Stage invites you to play your part in supporting a project that will secure our future. Beyond a one-time cash donation, you may wish to consider the following options when making your gift to the campaign.

In order to make it easier to support the Making an Entrance Capital Campaign, Portland Stage is accepting multi-year pledges for leadership level gifts. We will work with you to structure pledge payments to maximize your support in a way that is most convenient for you.

If you are interested in leaving a part of your estate to Portland Stage, designating PS as a beneficiary of a trust or life insurance policy, or donating real estate, works of art, or other tangible items, please contact [email protected] or 207-774-1043 x109.

Donors who wish to contribute to the MAKING AN ENTRANCE campaign from a Donor-Advised Fund may do so using Portland Stage’s Tax ID # 51-0143171. As soon as a transfer has been initiated, please notify the Portland Stage Business Manager ([email protected], 207-774-1043 x103) indicating the purpose of your gift.

Donors who are age 70½ or older may wish to donate to the MAKING AN ENTRANCE campaign directly from a traditional IRA. Donors can contribute up to $100,000 each year directly from their IRA to Portland Stage without having to pay taxes on the distribution. To make a transfer, contact your IRA administrator.

Donors may wish to give to the MAKING AN ENTRANCE campaign using appreciated stock, mutual fund shares, or other marketable securities. Donations of this kind must have been held for more than a year. At the time of donation, you may deduct the fair market value of the stock from your income taxes. To make a stock gift, please have your broker notify the Portland Stage Business Manager ([email protected], 207-774-1043 x103) so that we can properly credit the gift to you. 

Stock gifts may be transferred to Portland Stage via Fidelity using DTC # 0226, Portland Stage Company Account # 676271929. 

Brady Neujahr, Portfolio Administrator
[email protected]


Our partners in improving accessibility and visibility will be Scott Simons Architects, known for renovations of cultural landmarks including the Portland Public Library and the State Theater, and artist Pandora LaCasse, whose dramatic light sculptures brighten Portland’s parks each winter. Working with Simons and LaCasse, we will create welcoming spaces that improve the overall patron experience and encourage dialogue, networking, and community engagement. 

This transformation aims to visually convey the vibrancy of Portland Stage’s spirit and programming to the face of the building, reflecting the values of the organization and its connection to the greater Portland community. Beyond changes to the facade of the main entry, interior improvements will create a more welcoming, energetic space that not only functions better for both the staff, artists, and patrons alike, but will be an experience that provokes curiosity and inspires passion for theater to be shared by all who walk through our doors.

Based in Portland, Maine, Scott Simons Architects is a multi-disciplinary firm providing architectural, landscape, planning and interior design services. Scott Simons has over thirty years of professional experience and is well known for his thoughtful and innovative solutions to complex projects.  He brings a unique design approach to all the firm’s work, and his commitment to designing buildings of exceptional beauty and substance underscore all of SSA’s projects.


For more than thirty-five years, Wright-Ryan has delivered construction services of the highest professional standard to clients throughout northern New England. Their team of highly skilled and motivated professionals recognizes that their work goes far beyond building the project. Wright-Ryan is in the business of helping clients achieve their organizational goals by providing thoughtful advice, innovative strategies, and consistent support beginning at the earliest stages and continuing as long as they are in their facility. Portland Stage is 

tremendously grateful to John Ryan, President, and Greg Lanou, Vice President and General Manager, who have been instrumental in developing the vision for this project and seeing it through to completion.

Thornton Tomasetti optimizes the design and performance of structures, materials and systems for projects of every size and level of complexity. The firm is an independent organization of engineers, scientists, architects and other professionals committed to being a sustainable, diverse, and enduring organization. Thornton Tomasetti will work in close partnership with Scott Simons Architects and Wright-Ryan Construction to ensure that building renovations are efficient, safe, and sustainable.

Pandora LaCasse has been designing custom site-specific lighting sculptures for over 15 years. Pandora’s whimsical, out-of-the-ordinary designs celebrate the physical space in which they’re located and are created specifically to engage the surrounding community. Her designs have been installed as public art by community and government organizations, as seasonal installations by corporate clients and real estate developers, and as permanent installations at private residences.




Executive & Artistic Director
Anita Stewart

Honorary Co-Chairs
Merle & Leonard Nelson

Steering Committee

Malcolm Poole &
Samantha Bowen

Dave Jourdan
Greg Lanou
Darrell Pardy

Nelson Toner
Anne Wade


Please check back soon for a list of individuals, foundations, and businesses that have been early supporters of the campaign!


Click on each image to read the testimonials


A capital campaign is an intensive fundraising effort in a defined time-frame for a specific project. In our case, the Making an Entrance Capital Campaign will raise funds for substantial FACILITY improvements and an increased ENDOWMENT. Contributions toward our Annual Fund will continue to support ongoing general operating expenses on a yearly basis.

Yes, Portland Stage engaged Sage Advancement Group, a professional fundraising consulting firm, to conduct a comprehensive feasibility study in the Spring of 2019. The study results were largely positive and concluded that Portland Stage is well-positioned to complete a successful campaign.

Portland Stage intends to reach our campaign fundraising goal by the summer of 2023, though we hope to do so even sooner! Facility improvements will begin in the fall/winter of 2022, and we aim to open our 50th Mainstage season in the Fall of 2023 with renovations complete.

Yes! Our Development office would be happy to discuss a payment schedule that works best for you. In general, campaign pledges must be paid in full within 2-3 years after making a pledge commitment depending on the level of giving.

All contributions will be acknowledged on a donor wall following completion of the campaign, and donors may also be acknowledged in annual reports, newsletter listings, and/or special media advertising unless anonymity is requested.

Yes! Naming of spaces, programs, and endowments are available based on levels of support to be determined by the Campaign Steering Committee at the time of the project.

Contact Beth Given, Development Director
[email protected] | 207.774.1043 x109