The American Express Company Takes a Leading Role as the Exclusive Inaugural Sponsor of the Upstairs Theatre Season and the Exclusive Sponsor of the Upstairs Theatre Transition. Steppenwolf is delighted to recognize the American Express Company’s continued sponsorship of the Upstairs Theatre Season and the Upstairs Theatre Transition. This is the second and final year of the company’s generous grant and it is through this support that Steppenwolf is able to feature Cherry Orchard in the Upstairs Theatre as part of the subscription series. In addition to providing subscribers with the opportunity to experience a play in this intimate space, this initiative is critical to Steppenwolf's efforts to reach new audiences. By offering subscription series productions in two spaces instead of one, we are able to extend the run of each play and open up seats for new subscribers and single-ticket buyers. Since 1997, the American Express Performing Arts Fund has helped major arts organizations across the United States develop and sustain a broader audience base for the future. As of 2004, the company has distributed more than $8 million to 43 organizations through this program which focuses on community outreach, the development of a broader, more diverse audience base and a dependable revenue stream for long-term financial stability. Steppenwolf is extremely grateful for the American Express Company’s visionary support and looks forward to sharing many successes with them during the 2004-2005 Upstairs Theatre Season.