Tucson business leader and Arizona Theatre Company (ATC) board member Mike Kasser will guarantee $1 million toward ATC’s $2 million fund-raising goal if an equal amount can be raised through the outreach effort now underway.

As a result, the ATC Board of Trustees has extended the fund-raising deadline for this effort from Friday, July 1 until Friday, July 15. To that end, ATC Board of Trustees Chair Cameron C. Artigue said that a private donor has committed $100,000 as a separate donation to ensure that ATC operations can continue until the new deadline.

“I am hopeful that this guarantee based on the responses I’ve received in Tucson will encourage others in our community, and particularly our friends in Phoenix where ATC also is a major artistic and cultural influence, to join us in ensuring that this iconic and vital arts institution continues operating,” Kasser said. “ Having strong support from both communities will help convince people who may be uncertain about making a donation that there is widespread belief in and support for ATC. We simply cannot afford to see Arizona Theatre Company go dark.”

ATC announced this week that it needed $2 million by July 1 in order to fund the 2016-17 season and continue operations.

ATC Board Chair Artigue said that if the necessary funds are not secured, the company “will be forced step back and consider all of our options which include going on a temporary hiatus to restructure the business model to ensure its long-term sustainability or permanently shutting down.”

“Ironically, despite the past two seasons being among our most successful, both in terms of artistic acclaim and ticket sales, we experienced a disappointing year in our ability to attract the necessary level of contributed income to continue that progress,” he said. “We remain hopeful, but have to address the situation realistically.”