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Triumvirate showing documentary to fundraise for rebuild

Sabine Poux
Triumvirate lost its Nikiski space to a fire in February 2020. Since then, it's been raising money to build a new facility.

Triumvirate Theatre is showing a documentary about the rebuilding of its theater this weekend, the latest fundraiser for the nonprofit after a fire razed its Nikiski facility last year.

The movie, called “The Show Must Go On,” splices together early footage from just after the fire with interviews with actors and community members, said Triumvirate Executive Director Joe Rizzo. Josiah Martin from Martin Media in Kenai edited the film.

Rizzo said he’s been really touched by the support the theater has received so far.

"The documentary is kind of about that. It’s about the fire, it’s about what happened," he said. "But it’s also, more so about the journey that this little tiny community has gone through, and this organization has gone through, to get as far as we’ve gotten. And that’s a story worth telling."

The showing this Saturday is a fundraiser for Triumvirate, to chip away at the estimated $4.7 million needed to build a new theater on a parcel of land near Daubenspeck Park, in Kenai.

It’s working now to match a challenge grant from the Richard and Diane Block Foundation, for $100,000. Rizzo said they’ve gotten to $92,000 of that match so far.

Last year, Triumvirate won a $1 million grant from the Rasmuson Foundation.

"With that, we have cash in-hand right now — about $1.5 million in cash," Rizzo said. "We have hundreds and hundreds of thousands of dollars in in-kind donations that we can use to put this building up. And then we have two very large grants pending."

One is a grant from the Murdoch Charitable Trust for about $500,000. Rizzo said Triumvirate is also on the appropriations list from Sen. Lisa Murkowski’s office for $1 million.

"So if either of those or both of those things turn out for us, then we’re going to be in really good shape for putting this building up," Rizzo said.

He said they hope to break ground on the new theater by spring 2023 or 2024 — depending on funding.

The public showing for the documentary, “The Show Must Go On,” starts at noon at Kenai Cinemas this Saturday, Sept. 10.

Tickets are $10. The movie runs about an hour and 15 minutes. You can purchase tickets online.

Sabine Poux is a producer and reporter for the Brave Little State podcast of Vermont Public. She was formerly news director and evening news host at KDLL in Kenai.

Originally from New York, Sabine has lived and reported in Argentina and Vermont and Kenai.
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