Financial Transparency, or
How We Use Money To Make Art
Emit Theatre is always accepting individual donations, from supporters like you, and applying for grants to fill up our funding “cookie jar.” We take all of those sweet resources and use them to create our season.
Too often this process is done behind closed doors, but Emit Theatre cares deeply about transparency, and we want everyone to know exactly how our financial cookie crumbles.
Because Emit Theatre is a charitable organization, anyone can look up our tax information online. However, as an educational company, we want to go the extra mile and break down our spending for you. Here are some ways to understand our finances:
What Have We Received & How Have We Used It?
Look at our 2021 Fiscal Year* Budget to see how much money we collect (Profit) and where it goes (Loss).
How much do we spend on our programming?
Whenever our income exceeds $25,000, we complete a Form 990-EZ, which is an overview of our activities, governance, and detailed financial information. On Page 2, Part III you can find a description of how we spent money in our three largest programming areas in Fiscal Year 2021.
What Are Our Future Financial Plans?
Our budget is made up of how much money we hope to raise (Income) and where we expect to use it (Expenses) by August. Look at our Current Fiscal Year Project Budget, as approved by our board of directors. We recently were awarded a $25,000 grant from the New York State Council of the Arts, and we are collaborating with our board and artist ensemble on a detailed plan to allocate those funds.
What Do We Pay Our Artists?
We pay our artists for everything they do. Currently, artists are paid $25/hour for rehearsals, meetings, administrative work, and training, and a fee of $100 per performance; teaching artists receive $75/hour for facilitating workshops.
*A "Fiscal Year" is a year in the life of a company. Emit Theatre's season mirrors the New York City school year, so our Fiscal Year (FY) begins in September and ends in August. The number in the name of our FY reflects when our season ends.
Washed Ashore, September 2021 - one of Emit's free Story Walk performances.
Students at PS 161 experience Emit's 2021 virtual production of La Canción en la Tormenta.
Our Financial Priorities
Our goals as an organization are simple: provide high quality immersive theatre experiences to learners of all kinds, and support our artists. Translating these goals into a financial reality is directly tied to our artistic process. Here are some ways we aim to embody our goals:
Financially Accessible Programming
We run four different programs which are all completely free for audiences to attend. Our free series include Little Lights pop-up performances, Story Walk performance activities, Sensory Storytelling workshops, and our virtual Play Along Series. We also frequently use grant funding and donations to provide discounted and free programming for schools.
Fair Compensation for Artists
We employ our entire Artist Ensemble, and they are compensated for all of the Emit work they do, whether it be rehearsals and performances or meetings and administrative support.
Thanks to funding from the NYSCA-A.R.T./New York Creative Opportunity Fund (A Statewide Theatre Regrant Program), in FY22 we have provided our Artist Ensemble with Anti-Racist Theatre training with Nicole Brewer as well as mental health services through a generous partnership with The Inner Stage.
Efficient Operation Practices
We use affordable insurance, accounting and legal services, and specialized software necessary to run a responsible nonprofit organization. Our relationships with Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts, Eisenkraft CPA, and Arts FMS ensure we are compliant with state, city, and federal requirements for nonprofits and that we have a sound fiscal controls policy.
We are particularly grateful to A.R.T./New York for providing us with grant funding, workshops, and resources.
Minimalist Production Aesthetic
We keep our production costs low by committing to a human-centric contemporary production style, augmented by stock from free resources such as Materials for the Arts. We also keep our rehearsal and performance rental fees low thanks to the generosity of The New York Foundling and The Shakespeare Forum. The majority of our production budget goes towards accessibility services, including live CART captions for our virtual Play Along Series.
We are excited to continue building a culture of ethical and inclusive budgetary spending at Emit Theatre. In these times of economic insecurity, we want to keep providing high quality programming for our community, no matter how thin our audiences’ financial resources may become. If we are able to build up a Rainy Day fund from generous individual donations, we’ll be able to make art and give back to the next generation of artists and educators, regardless of prospective uncertainty. Help our current and future audiences out, become a donor!