Festival of Arts Officials Report on 2022 Season


At the Festival of Arts and Pageant of the Masters annual membership meeting on Nov. 9, members were updated on the past season’s achievements and among the first to have a glimpse at the 2023 Pageant of the Masters. The event, held at the Festival’s Forum Theater, featured reports on the past fiscal year’s activities, an overview of the 2022 season, recognition of long-time volunteers and staff, and a preview of the 90th Annual Pageant of the Masters “Art Colony: In the Company of Artists.”

Festival President David Perry began the meeting by reporting on the 2022 season. Photo/Festival of the Arts

Festival President David Perry began the meeting by reporting on the 2022 season for both the Festival of Arts and Pageant of the Masters. After his opening remarks, Perry presented a video that captured the 2022 season and the Festival’s ninetieth anniversary. The video featured the fine art show, the Junior Art Exhibit, art education programs, special events, and Pageant of the Masters.

Perry introduced the 2022 Board of Directors and welcomed Vice President Wayne Beglin to the podium to introduce the Festival and Pageant’s management team, including the newly appointed Director of Safety and Security, Michael Miller.

Perry then reflected on the 2022 season in his President’s Report, which he described as “running on all cylinders.” Perry stated, “The Festival is now in excellent financial condition and well positioned for future challenges. Sponsorships and donations increased, and Pageant ticket sales are nearing pre-pandemic numbers.” He also noted the 2022 summer program included a full schedule of art education instruction, special events, and daily live entertainment. The art exhibit once again proved just how talented Orange County artists are and Perry highlighted the Festival’s 90th anniversary celebration in collaboration with the City of Laguna Beach. “The City of Laguna Beach and the County of Orange honored us with proclamations. The ninetieth anniversary took on a special meaning of resiliency, community pride, and artistic endeavor.”

Perry then welcomed Fred Sattler to share the 2022 Treasure Report. The 2021/2022 year was finally a return to normalcy after a few challenging years, according to Treasurer Fred Sattler, who presented the unaudited annual financial report. Sattler reported unaudited revenues of roughly $10.9 million, and expenses $8.5 million, resulting in a net income of about $2.4 million. 2022 unaudited Festival of Arts net assets were reported at $11.6 million with liabilities at $.5 million, resulting in net assets at $11 million.

Board member Pat Kollenda proudly announced that the Festival of Arts has awarded over $3.5 million to local students. This past year, the Festival made some changes to the scholarship program, granting larger scholarship packages to fewer applicants to better offset the high cost of college. Five students were awarded first-year scholarships of $20,000 each for a total of $100,000. Each recipient will be granted $5,000 per year over a four-year period. Scholarships were awarded in film, theater, visual arts, and writing. The average first-year recipient’s high school GPA was 3.88. A total of fourteen applicants applied in fifteen areas. Kollenda then welcomed former scholarship recipient and current Pageant of the Masters Director, Diane Challis Davy to the podium.

Pageant Director Diane Challis Davy presented a slideshow of artwork to be presented in next summer’s Pageant of the Masters, which is celebrating its 90th anniversary in 2023. The production of “Art Colony: In the Company of Artists,” will acknowledge the deep connections and memorable stories of artists assisting one another throughout the world and throughout history. Audiences can expect to see artworks such as “Alone and Together (Under the Freeway)” by Chicano artist David Botello, “Lift Every Voice and Sing” by African American sculptor Augusta Savage, and Native American paintings by Bert Geer Phillips. Also featured are artworks by French artists Pierre-Auguste Renoir and Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, Danish painter Michael Ancher, Italian sculptor Luca della Robbia and paintings by Laguna Beach artist Roger Kuntz.

Pageant Director Diane Challis Davy and Board member Pat Kollenda then presented long-time volunteers with Life Membership Awards, acknowledging each for their dedication and 15-year commitment to the Pageant of the Masters. Challis Davy recognized that the volunteers are the heart and soul of the Pageant’s success. The 15-year service memberships recognized were Elizabeth Canales (Makeup), Michele Kaplan (Makeup), Alan Perlmutter (Wardrobe and Cast), Gail Perlmutter (Headpiece/Wardrobe and Cast), Randy Ray (Cast Area), Tom Steinfeld (Wardrobe), Adrian Van Deudekom (Cast), and Lisa Wolter (Makeup).

Perry returned to the podium to recognize and congratulate employees for their years of service and commitment to the organization. Matt McKinnon (Master Carpenter) was recognized for 7 years of service, Dan Duling (Pageant Script Writer) and Meghan Perez (Marketing/PR Coordinator) were recognized for 10 years of service, David Marceau (Pageant Set Construction Technician and Welder) was recognized for 15 years of service, C.W. Keller (Master Electrician for the Pageant) was recognized for 20 years of service, and Caryn Werfelmann (Guest Services Director) was recognized for 30 years of service.

This year there was no need for a board election because the three incumbents ran unopposed. Reinstated to the Festival of Arts Board of Directors to serve new three-year terms are incumbents David Perry, Jeff Rovner and Fred Sattler. Also continuing on the board are Wayne Baglin, John Connolly, Ed Hanke, Pat Kollenda, Tom Lamb, and Anita Mangels. As a group, the board is committed to the Festival of Arts mission to support and promote the arts and arts education.

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