The Show Must Go On
Theatre Executive Director David White III said, "They won't begin to believe their eyes, of what they were missing all these years."
Workers are peeling away layers of paint to reveal the walls' original colors, but they'll need more money before they can start painting.
"In previous attempts, there were a number of different art groups as part of it," said Kevin Gibbens, fund-raising co-chaiman. "Now, it's just really more focused with the Missouri Symphony, which owns the building and is driving us forward. Them and the Columbia Art League, I think, are two very critical but stable art groups that will make a difference this time around."
Co-chairwoman Axie Hindman added, "I think people realize that the time is now to preserve this theater. It is not something that we can put off for another day, another committee and certainly not another generation."
Gibbens continued, "You have got to have a heart for the arts, and the Missouri Center for the Arts will have a great deal of heart, a lot of passion. Artists are very passionate people. This stage will be filled with the passion of artists, theater, dance and music, public speaking, the whole gamut."
Supporters estimate the restoration will cost $6 million. They hope to raise half through a public fund-raising campaign. If they raise the money, theatre renovations should be done by June 2008.
Audio and photographs by Paul David Lampe