Theater Light

Dear CPAC friends and family,

There is a longstanding theater tradition that I wanted to share with you: whenever the theater is empty, it's customary to leave one light on. One single light stands alone in the dark on stage; we call it a ghost light. Plenty of folklore surrounds the origin, but the meaning is unmistakable: though the theater is empty, we will return. The actors, musicians, directors, technicians, designers, carpenters, dancers, electricians, stitchers, stage managers...

the students and teachers...
the doers, dreamers, makers, and creators...
the ARTISTS...

I think it's important for me to tell you: closing the doors to our CPAC theaters has been one of the most profoundly heartbreaking things I have ever done in my life. The theater is a refuge for so many of us, especially students, and it hurts to not be able to still share this space with you when, it seems, we need it most. We resignedly join theaters around the world who have no choice but to lock the doors and leave the ghost light on.

But A place holder. A bookmark in your favorite story. Yes, we are crushed; but do you know what crushed artists do? We create. We are already starting to see passion bursting at the seams of artists who, amidst crisis, hold innovation and creativity at center stage.

We'll be unlocking doors and unplugging ghost lights in no time, but until then– here's a ghost light to let you know: we will be back. 

Throughout the rest of this shelter-at-home, I'm going to be your nerdy pen pal. I'll be sending you access to free and awesome arts resources, videos of our own wildly talented students, entertainment and escapism you're probably craving right now, and maybe even a few creative opportunities for you to indulge in as well. The show will go on, and I hope you'll join us! 

Please find information below regarding refunds & donations, and know that my virtual-door is always open.

Stay safe and healthy.

Much love,


Donations & Refunds

Cuesta College is closely monitoring developments on COVID-19, and the CPAC greatly appreciates your patience and understanding as we adapt to this rapidly evolving situation. In compliance with recent orders and recommendations, we are sad to inform you that all CPAC events through May are cancelled.


We heavily rely on your patronage and generous donations to produce each new season. In case you didn't know, ticket sales make up the only operating budget for each of our Performing Arts programs. The tickets you purchase go straight to that group, so the loss of ticket revenue the rest of this season impacts them significantly.

If you have already purchased tickets this season, you can choose to donate the cost of your ticket to support the group you were scheduled to see. All you have to do is reply to this email with your name and the title of the event. We'll confirm your order number and ensure those funds are donated!

** For extra credit: you can also share why you're choosing to would be a special treat for us to read during this chaotic time.**

Please email us if you’d like to donate your ticket before Monday, March 30.

Ticket Refunds

If we do not hear from you before Monday, March 30, we will automatically refund your ticket purchase.

Our professors and students are so grateful for your support, but we absolutely understand if you prefer a refund. Partial refunds are possible! The box office is not staffed during this time, and voicemail will only be checked sporadically. Please email with any questions.

If you purchased tickets for the following events, we hope to hear from you before Monday, March 30:

  • 37th Annual Jazz Festival Concert – Mar. 13
  • Cuesta Choirs "Unity" Concert – Mar. 15
  • Book of the Year with Meredith May – Apr. 22 (will be rescheduled for Fall)
  • The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee – April 30 - May 10 (will be rescheduled for Fall)
  • Cuesta Wind Ensemble – May 10
  • Cuesta Jazz Ensembles – May 15
  • Cuesta Choirs “Something Old, New, Borrowed & Blues” – May 16
  • Combopalooza – May 10
  • Central Coast Gilbert & Sullivan "Ruddigore" – Jun. 20 & 21

Refunds for the Cuesta Wind Ensemble & SLO Wind Orchestra "Middle Kingdom" concert on Mar. 21 have already been processed.

Support the CPAC

If you would like to make a tax-deductible donation to the CPAC, you can select the "Cultural and Performing Arts Center Council" option from the drop down menu on this webpage. We absolutely couldn't do what we do without you, and we are so lucky to have your continued support. 

Please take care of yourselves, everyone, because we can't wait to #SeeYouAtTheCPAC again soon.