S.O.S. Songs of Summer Music; it's a sign of dire times for Theatre Cambrian.

The Sudbury based group been a local staple for 33 years, but its currently in financial trouble; almost $300,000 in debt.

"We have operational expenses that exceed our revenue coming in," said Rod Bazinet, vice president of Theatre Cambrian's theatre board.

"We're not looking for a hand out from the community, we're looking for a hand up. What we're trying to do is deliver products and entice the community to become more involved with our artists, so that we can develop that relationship.”

Theatre Cambrian is offering free admission to a special music event to be held in Memorial Park on Friday; hoping people who come will donate some money, and help raise some badly needed funds.

“We decided to take a chance and invest the money that we have in the artists and ask the artists to bring their ‘A’ game to the stage to really show what we have in terms of art in Sudbury and Northern Ontario," Bazinet said.

Finances are also an issue at the Sudbury Theatre Centre, where professional performers are on stage. 

The STC is looking at hundreds of thousands of dollars in red ink.

"I'm depressed because of the struggle," said Gerry Copeman, Sudbury Theatre Centre board of governors president.

"But I'm optimistic because of what I believe to be what the city and region recognizes as something that is important for the quality of life."

"Unless we have these places that foster and develop, much like Timbits hockey or things like that, than we're not going to be able to grow and grow the artists. I think it's just about doing work that is relevant and keeping it a really high quality," explained Alessandro Costantini, Yes Theatre artistic director.

Aside from reaching out to community members and businesses for additional sponsorship, the STC has also hired a consultant to try figure out what needs to be done in order to survive

As for Theatre Cambrian, its big production for this fall is the ‘Wizard of Oz’ in October and in order to stay in business it needs to sell at least half the seats for all its performances.