“This has been quite a journey, as we have come to the conclusion of this amazing project,” Jobb said at the theater dedication ceremony last week. “I can’t believe that we have this building in Brentwood – let alone at our school.”
The Theatre at Edna Hill is nearly three times the size of the Bill Bristow Community Theater, which was closed last December and removed from the Edna Hill campus to make way for the new theater. The new theater is equipped with a sophisticated lighting and sound system that will greatly improve the quality of performances. And it has 290 seats – 60 more than the Bristow theater.
“I think after bringing that other facility here and seeing what kind of amazing program he started, Bill Bristow would have loved to see this facility here at this school,” said Edna Hill drama teacher Bart Schneider.
Schneider also thought the late Kayla Shepard, an Edna Hill alumna who died in a car accident last October, would have liked the theater, as she had graced the Bristow stage many times during her stay at the Brentwood middle school.
The theater’s dedication ceremony preceded the debut of Edna Hill’s spring production of “The Music Man.” Schneider proudly announced during the ceremony that the play was sold out for the debut performance, a testament of the Brentwood community’s support of the arts.
Mayor Bob Taylor, who delivered a proclamation, said Brentwood is lucky to have the new facility and he looks forward to seeing the theater utilized by the students and the entire Brentwood community. “What a facility, eh?” Taylor said. “When you walk out of here, you feel really good. The memories of plays, the memories of laughter, the joy we experience at graduation – when the ceremony is held inside because of rain – you’ve got a whole lifetime of wondrous events, wondrous memories.”
To get the theater warmed up for the night’s big show, the dedication ceremony featured performances by the Edna Hill Band, and Edna Hill’s a cappella group Throw Back.
Schneider said he’s looking forward to improving the Edna Hill drama program now that the school has the new theater. He plans to use the new technology to try new things and put on bigger and better performances. “This is way more than I could have ever imagined.”
Edna Hill’s production of “The Music Man” wraps up this weekend. Tonight’s performance, May 14, takes place at 7 p.m. The curtain goes up on Saturday’s shows at 2 and 7 p.m. Tickets are $5.