Everyman Theatre held a groundbreaking ceremony this morning at its future home, the old Town Theatre, at 315 W. Fayette Street. Renovations began in April, and Everyman, which has outgrown its current Charles Street location, will move into the new space for the 2012-2013 season.
After a spirited rendition of "There's No Business Like Show Business"—sung by James Gardiner and Delores King Williams—kicked off the program, Everyman Managing Director Ian Tresselt accepted a $60,000 check from Senator Verna Jones-Rodwell and the Maryland General Assembly. Jones-Rodwell told the crowd that she and her brother used to sneak into the Town to see movies when they were kids. Then, Tresselt thanked Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake for her "stalwart support" and noted that she helped secure $1.4 million in funding for the project.
Following the mayor, Artistic Director Vincent Lancisi looked and sounded like a man realizing a life-long dream, and he thanked the actors and actresses in the audience—including Vivienne Shub and Bruce Nelson—who helped make it happen. Lancisi also pointed out that the Town was originally built a century ago for live theater (it was called the Empire, at the time), so it will be coming full circle.
From the podium, just about every speaker noted that the groundbreaking was a much-needed shot in the arm for ongoing Westside development efforts. And they applauded Everyman for raising nearly all of the $17.5 million needed for its capital campaign.
There's no business like show business, indeed.