2 Foundations Award $20K in Grants for Sound System

With nearly $20,000 in grants from two local foundations, Abrams Spotlight Productions Inc. has the
necessary funds to purchase a state-of-the-art theater sound system. The Greater Green Bay
Community Foundation contributed $10,000, and the Leon H. and Clymene M. Bond Foundation
awarded the remaining $9,900 of the theater’s Can You Hear Me Now? project. The sound system will
enhance the theater experience of the cast, crew, and audience, including older adults and individuals
with hearing impairments.
According to Bond Foundation executive director Jennifer Hanna, the project was selected for funding
because of the theater’s significance in the community.
“The foundation’s board of directors recognized Abrams Spotlight Productions as a great creative outlet
for the local community as well as an entertainment venue for people of all ages,” she said. “The board
was also impressed with the dedication and hard work of the many volunteers who are responsible for
the success of Abrams Spotlight Productions. The board felt that the sound system will also allow
Abrams Spotlight Productions to better serve the community.”
The grants cover the purchase of a sound board, amplifier, speakers and microphones. Additionally, ASPI
will install a hearing assisted sound loop system that works wirelessly with people’s hearing aids.
Bill Koehne, president of Abrams Spotlight Productions Inc., said the community theater was grateful to
be selected for the grants, because the current sound system is past its useful life.
“When the sound board failed during ‘White Christmas’ rehearsals in 2022, we scrambled to find a
solution. Luckily, we could borrow a sound board from another theater. But that wasn’t a long-term
solution,” he said. “When a speaker failed this year during rehearsals for ‘Gypsy,’ it was just another
indication that our theater needed a new sound system.”
Volunteers will provide the labor to install the sound system, saving the theater an estimated $3,000.
Carpenters, electricians, and ASPI volunteers will pull wire, groove the hardwood floor for the sound
loop, and install and connect the system.
“A new sound system will really make a big difference,” Koehne said. “When performers’ voices are too
quiet or overpowered by music, it’s hard for the audience to follow the storyline. The new sound system
and hearing loop enables everyone to fully enjoy a show.”