LYNN — Samantha Gambaccini, producing artistic director of Arts After Hours, hopes the 2019 Snow Ball fundraiser helps continue the momentum that built steadily during her first year as the downtown theater company’s boss.
The Snow Ball, at Lynn Museum on Friday, Jan. 18, at 7 p.m., will feature food and beverages, dancing, music and karaoke by DJ Jimmy Ice, a silent auction featuring one-of-a-kind works by LynnArts artists and more.
The season’s schedule will be unveiled that night, as will be numerous programs.
“This kicks off our ninth year and is our big fundraiser. It’s going to be a lot of fun, and proceeds go toward our productions and programs,” said Gambaccini. “Our mission is to engage and transform downtown Lynn through the experience of live theater, and funds raised at the Snow Ball will help us do that.”
Gambaccini said three mainstage productions are planned for the 2019 season, one more than last year. In addition, the half-day summer theater workshops for youth ages 7-17, a big hit a year ago, will become full-day weeklong happenings this year. Gambaccini anticipates sponsors will come forward to provide scholarships for students in need who would like to attend the workshops.
“I was so pleased with last year, my first. When Corey Jackson, the founder of Arts After Hours, stepped down, there were a lot of questions like ‘Will it keep going?'”
Not only did it keep going, the audacious, risky and edgy programming introduced by Jackson was embraced by Gambaccini and her team. This company is not about staging “The Music Man” and other Broadway chestnuts.
The devilish “Little Shop of Horrors” and “Edges,” a coming-of-age song cycle that featured an all-female cast, were out-on-the-fringe choices that were well received by theatergoers.
“I feel better equipped going into this season,” said Gambaccini. “I learned a lot last year. It was a bit of a trial by fire. At times I felt like it was Corey’s program. This year I feel it’s my company. We all very excited about 2019.”
Arts After Hours “Snow Ball,” Friday, Jan. 18, 7 p.m., at Lynn Museum, 590 Washington St. Tickets available at ArtsAfterHours.com.