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Leave a cultural testament that has lasting impact in the community by joining the Barbara Oliver Society for the Next Generation.

Sample language for a bequest

Letter of intent (fillable pdf)

2013-14 marks our 22nd season—a full generation—presenting theatre classics, neglected stage gems, and exciting new works that reflect the complexity of our lives today—sensitively directed and acted in the most intimate theatre in Berkeley. Plays like Thomas Gibbons’ Permanent Collection, Arthur Miller’s The Price, and Harold Pinter’s The Birthday Party; Oscar Wilde’s Salome, Euripides’ The Trojan Women, and August Strindberg’s Miss Julie; George Packer’s Betrayed, Neil LaBute’s Fat Pig, and Trouble in Mind, by Alice Childress. These are just a few of our acclaimed productions in recent years. With such a string of hit shows, we’ve clearly come of age--and like any growing family we’ve decided it is time to secure the long-term future of the unique enterprise begun by our founder Barbara Oliver in the fall of 1991.

What are the Benefits?

Whether you’ve attended our plays as a subscriber or single-ticket purchaser, you’re familiar with the close-knit feeling of our productions. That’s the achievement of a devoted team of theatre professionals—directors, actors, designers and craftsmen who enjoy working together in a collegial atmosphere to bring scripts to life. Your membership will insure that they keep doing such splendid work and will allow us to continue searching for fine contemporary plays through The Global Age Project, workshopping new plays, reviving great classics, and offering free public discussions at events like Script Alive. You can help bring all this about by including Aurora in your estate planning, thus enabling us to serve not just you—our first-generation audience—but generations to come. And you’ll enjoy the benefits of a special relationship to the Theatre.

  1. 1Each year, you will be invited to attend a Center Stage Salon that is held in a private home, where you’ll get a chance to hear and talk to the actors and director as they discuss the development of the current production and what it has meant to them.
  2. 2You will be invited to a yearly celebration honoring members of the Barbara Oliver Society for the Next Generation.
  3. 3Most importantly, you will know that you have left an important arts legacy to the whole Bay Area community. We can’t all be actors or directors., but for those of us who love first-quality theatre where diverse thoughts, emotions, and languages—sometimes painful and tragic, often very funny—are expressed in beautifully-crafted stories, there is no finer contribution we can make than to insure that a theatre like Aurora continues to shape the minds and hearts of our children and our neighbors.

Becoming a Member is easy to do and doesn’t have to take anything out of your pocket. To become a Charter Member of the Barbara Oliver Society, you need only to let us know that you’ve included Aurora Theatre Company in your estate plans. A simple charitable bequest may specify a cash sum or a percentage of your estate, and there is no required minimum amount to join the Society. Click here to fill out a letter of intent.


If you would like to leave a cultural testament that has lasting impact in the community, why not consider joining the Barbara Oliver Society for the Next Generation? For information on how to make a simple charitable bequest to Aurora—and about other vehicles which can offer significant tax advantages while providing current income—just contact the development office at (510) 843-4042, ext. 303 or development [at] You will not be obligating yourself in any way. Should you then choose to become a member of The Barbara Oliver Society, we will gratefully welcome you as one of the family in this, our 22nd anniversary season! For sample language for your bequest, please click here.

Members of the Barbara Oliver Society for The Next Generation

Nancy Axelrod
Cindy Hill & Steve Beckendorf
Elizabeth Burwell
Carol Emory
Jacquelin Ewing
Ellen & Barry Levine
Inez Lewandowitz
Hermine & Sumner Marshall
Margaret D. & Winton McKibben
Alison McLean
Margaret A. Phillips
Tom Ross
Deborah Dashow Ruth
Julie Saltzman
Valerie Sopher
Janis Kate Turner

Barbara Oliver, 1927 - 2013

In May 2013, Aurora Theatre Company lost its beloved founder, Barbara Oliver. Barbara built Aurora as a nurturing environment for artists to produce plays that place a high value on language and ideas. With passion, talent, and generosity of spirit, she led us to produce works that not only demand outstanding craft but also deep intelligence and compassion. This core value guides Aurora to this day and is the reason for our success. Barbara will be dearly missed, even as her legacy continues to guide us, challenge us, and keep Aurora true to its roots of being a place where great art and great artists thrive.

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AURORA THEATRE COMPANY| 2081 Addison Street, Berkeley, CA 94704| MAP