BECKLEY (AP) — Efforts are underway to revive Theatre West Virginia.
The efforts are being led by Scott Hill, director of the annual October Sky Rocket Boys Festival at the Beckley Exhibition Coal Mine.
The Register-Herald reports a meeting was scheduled for Thursday night at Tamarack in Beckley.
Hill said the purpose of the meeting was to generate ideas for Theatre West Virginia, an outdoor theater company that was founded in 1955 and ceased operations in September due to financial problems.
“We’re just going to have to see if the community wants it to be there,” Hill said. “If they do, step up and be a part of it.”
Hill said Theatre West Virginia’s remaining debts will be paid off with the sale of its office building in Mabscott.
He said the hope is to have Theatre West Virginia back performing by June. Plans also call for staging Broadway-type shows, fundraising concerts and training academies for actors.
The number of weekly production days would be cut from seven to four, running Thursday through Sunday. Reductions also would be made in paid office staff and actors to save costs and Hill hopes to get at least 50 additional volunteers.
“We’re going to find those ideas and nurture them, and this must be done in a completely transparent atmosphere,” Hill said.
Former theater board president Mike Cavendish said he’ll serve as a volunteer.
“It was a very painful, but obvious, decision in September,” Cavendish said. “There’s been a lot of discussion with a lot of people to look at the possibility of TWV being re-hatched, if you will.
“Funding is a major issue, but we’re approaching it as such that it will be done more on a volunteer basis. We’re trying to rally up community support.”