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A Game-Changing Campaign for the 20th Season and Beyond

Our Vision

  • To be recognized as one of the top five performing arts festivals in the country, known nationally as a destination for performing arts excellence
  • To become the top destination festival in Virginia
  • To grow the Festival audience to more than 100,000 annually
  • To become a household name in Hampton Roads
  • To reach every student in Hampton Roads at least once during his/her school years


  • 67,238 Festival attendees, 2015
  • 34,121 students reached in education programs, 2015
  • 41 states and 10 countries represented in audiences, 2015
  • 93 countries of origin for VAF visitors, 2015
  • 185 tour buses, 2015
  • 80+ world-class performances and events per year
  • 1050 cast members in the Virginia International Tattoo, 2015

Reaching Out

  • We Change Lives
    • Over 34,000 students participate annually in Festival student matinees, in-school performances, master classes and workshops, connecting them with world-class performers, new cultures and traditions.
  • 2014-15 Education Outreach
    • 97 Education events
      • 9 Student matinees
      • 89 In-school events
    • 17 Cities/Counties participated
    • 26 Groups/Artists participated
    • 34,121 Total students reached in education programs
  • Rhythm Project
    • Offers positive alternatives to under-served and at-risk students throughout Hampton Roads. Since its inception, the Rhythm Project has presented more than 500 performances for a combined audience of nearly 500,000 people.
    • The Rhythm Project All-Stars have a 99% high school graduation rate, as compared to 54% of their peers.
    • In 2015-16, the Rhythm Project included 190 students in 9 different ensembles throughout Hampton Roads.
  • Beyond the Concert Hall
    • Free and open to the public, so people can participate regardless of any financial barriers
    • Paired with indoor Festival performances, adding depth to your Festival experience.
    • Informal settings in a variety of neighborhoods to get new people interested in the arts

An Economic Engine

  • The Festival is an important economic driver.
  • Festival attendance from out of the region has grown from 12% in 1998 to 32% in 2013.
  • In 2012, the Festival's economic impact on the Commonwealth of Virginia was assessed to be more than $17 million annually. Source: Tourism Economics, VAF Impact Study, 2012

Our Accountability

  • The Festival is known for balancing exceptional programming with fiscal integrity.
  • We strive to balance our operating budget each year with both earned income from ticket sales and generous charitable support from donors.
  • Our commitment to you as a donor:
    • In accordance with the Donor Bill of Rights, as stated by the Association of Fundraising Professionals, we will:
      • Inform you of our mission, of the way in which we intend to use your donation, and will promptly and truthfully answer any questions you may have.
      • Keep you apprised of the identities of the members of our Board of Directors.
      • Provide access to our most recent financial statements, upon request.
      • Use your gift for the purpose you specify.
      • Ensure appropriate acknowledgement and recognition, while handling information about your donation with respect and confidentiality, and will remove your name from mailing lists upon request.
      • Maintain professional relationships with organizations of interest.

Campaign News

If you are interested in learning more about the VAForever Campaign for the 20th Season and Beyond or would like to make a gift, contact Kim McCoy, Associate Director of Development at 757.282.2807 or kmccoy@vafest.org.