New Mexico Actors Lab last month took over the lease of The Swan Theater on Parkway Drive, which was operated by the International Shakespeare Center since January 2019.
Robert Benedetti, New Mexico Actors Lab managing director, said he had heard the center was about to dismantle the theater and offered to take over the lease. The Swan, once called the Adobe Rose, will be renamed the Actors Lab.
“It’s been an objective of ours for a long time to have our own theater,” Benedetti said.
New Mexico Actors Lab was established in 2014 and until now staged shows by renting Teatro Paraguas. Benedetti hopes to stage five shows in summer 2021 if mass gathering restrictions are lifted.
New Mexico Actors Lab has launched a $20,000 fundraising campaign to help defray the estimated rent and utility costs until June 2021.
“It’s obvious we will have at least eight months without revenue,” Benedetti said. “That was the risk we decided to take. We signed a three-year lease. We’re also very eager to make the venue available to other theater groups.”
New Mexico Actors Lab is granting International Shakespeare Center the use of the Actors Lab for one show a year. The center hopes to stage outdoor shows in the summer, Executive Director Caryl Farkas said.
“I want to strongly state our gratitude to Actors Lab,” Farkas said. “It’s that mutual support society. They had enough of a war chest to give it a shot.”