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Old 10-07-2015, 10:53 PM   #1
meddlepal
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Emerson's Continued Destruction of Downtown Boston

Throw this one on the pile along with Boylston Place.

http://www.bostonglobe.com/arts/2015...TKN/story.html
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Old 10-08-2015, 12:57 AM   #2
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Re: Emerson's Continued Destruction of Downtown Boston

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Throw this one on the pile along with Boylston Place.

http://www.bostonglobe.com/arts/2015...TKN/story.html
At first I thought you were being hyperbolic, but holy shit! They can't be allowed to do that to the Colonial Theatre.
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Old 10-08-2015, 06:34 AM   #3
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Re: Emerson's Continued Destruction of Downtown Boston

I just came on ab in hopes that there was talk on here about this article - I had read in Tempe globe a few weeks ago that they were planning on closing the theater but at that time they had said they didn't know what the future plan was and that they might maintain it as a theater.

Fuck Emerson! This used to be a cool college with a very good radio station (the latter of which now mostly sucks due to heavy invasion from the school administration for a much more corporate model - Google and you will find articles on this as well).

The colonial is one of the coolest theaters we have.. This is so not ok... I hope people fight this because the city govt seems to let them do whatever they want - like all the local colleges (a fact I don't really understand).
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Old 10-08-2015, 07:17 AM   #4
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Re: Emerson's Continued Destruction of Downtown Boston

What, if anything, can be done to fight Emerson on this? I imagine that this would have to go through the BRA so maybe this will get stopped at that point?
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Old 10-08-2015, 07:20 AM   #5
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Re: Emerson's Continued Destruction of Downtown Boston

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What, if anything, can be done to fight Emerson on this? I imagine that this would have to go through the BRA so maybe this will get stopped at that point?
There must be plenty of people willing to fight this, and it will surely need to go through bra
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Old 10-08-2015, 07:22 AM   #6
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Re: Emerson's Continued Destruction of Downtown Boston

Asked my Emersonian friend about this- she says she got an email from Emerson's president this morning stating that the Globe got a hold of these plans without permission and "and that's only one of the many options but they're definitely keeping it as a theater."

Apparently she gets a lot of emails from them re: covering their rears. Must be entertaining.
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Old 10-08-2015, 08:15 AM   #7
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Re: Emerson's Continued Destruction of Downtown Boston

Nope. Nope. NOPE.

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Old 10-08-2015, 09:23 AM   #8
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Re: Emerson's Continued Destruction of Downtown Boston

Emerson is really owning the transition from good influence on a run-down section of town to soulless neighborhood dominating monolith. The school is what it is but it can't be allowed to mow down any more good things on that block. Killing the alley was bad enough. This thing is a treasure. That Emerson doesn't recognize that is more than a little concerning.
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Old 10-08-2015, 10:52 PM   #9
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BU and the Huntington Theatre

First the shuttering and potential destruction of the Colonial Theatre and now this:

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Huntington Theatre faces uncertainty as BU plans sale of building

By Don Aucoin GLOBE STAFF OCTOBER 07, 2015

After 33 years, Boston University and the Huntington Theatre Company are parting ways, and the university is putting the BU Theatre up for sale, effective immediately.

For the highly regarded Huntington, which just two years ago won a Tony Award for regional theater, the dissolution of the partnership with BU ushers in a period of uncertainty.

For the wider theater community, it is the third bombshell in the past month, following the announcement that CitiBank Inc. will end its sponsorship of the Citi Performing Arts Center and news that downtown’s Colonial Theatre will go dark for at least a year of renovations, with its future very much up in the air.

Though the Huntington and BU framed their split as amicable, the university had rejected an offer by the Huntington to buy the BU Theatre and two adjoining BU-owned buildings, after protracted negotiations.

“It really was just a question of price,’’ Gary Nicksa, BU’s senior vice president of operations, told the Globe Wednesday. “What they felt it was worth, we felt it was worth more. We felt the only way to settle that was to market it and see what buyers were willing to offer.’’

In the short term, the Huntington can stay put. A joint statement said that BU will stipulate that any buyer must “guarantee the Huntington’s use of the facility through June 30, 2017.’’ But in the long term, depending on the buyer, it is possible that the space will not operate as a theater at all.

In an interview, Huntington managing director Michael Maso said the Huntington still hopes to buy the BU Theatre and the two adjoining buildings, which the university is also putting on the market. Maso said the Huntington may seek a partnership with a commercial developer or another institution.

He sketched ambitious plans for the purchase and renovation of the theater and the creation of more facilities, saying the project could include the addition of a café, a rehearsal hall, and space for the company’s offices and education programs. A capital campaign of between $40 million and $60 million toward that goal “is not out of the question,’’ Maso said, though he stressed that is a “very rough notion.’’

“If in fact we don’t succeed in making the deal to own the space or partner with the space, we’re going to have to make alternate plans,’’ he conceded.

Might those plans involve moving operations entirely to the Huntington-run Calderwood Pavilion, in the South End? Maso suggested not.

The Huntington stages large productions, such as the current “A Little Night Music,’’ at the BU Theatre but often presents smaller productions in the Calderwood Pavilion, which it operates at a cost of $400,000 per year while offering space to dozens of midsize and small theater companies at subsidized rates.

Maso was adamant that he does not want to displace other theater companies. Moreover, Huntington spokeswoman Temple Gill said Wednesday night that the company needs a theater in the 700- to 800-seat range, with a good-sized stage, in order to present its larger productions. None of the theaters inside the Calderwood is that big.

BU’s Nicksa said the university is selling the BU Theatre and the other two buildings — where students learn scenic and costume design and other aspects of production — in order to consolidate theater education programs on its Commonwealth Avenue-area campus. He said the university has retained a broker and expects to list the properties within the next few days.

The university and the Huntington had been talking for a couple of years about the fate of the BU Theatre.

“It was obvious that the facility, while wonderful, had years of deferred maintenance,’’ said Maso, adding: “The Huntington was willing to invest tens of millions of dollars to bring the BU Theatre and its support space up to world-class status. But in the middle of the conversation, it became clear that we had two separate agendas.’’

It’s similarly clear that the Huntington will not receive a discount as the company bids for the theater. BU’s Nicksa said the university has a “fiduciary responsibility’’ to “receive fair value, market value, for the properties’’ — money that he said will be invested in teaching and research. “We think the highest and best use is some form of mixed-use development,” said Nicksa.

Founded by BU in 1982, the Huntington became independent in 1986. BU has provided free use of the 890-seat theater to the Huntington, along with a subsidy that this fiscal year will amount to $200,000, Nicksa said. The Huntington’s budget for the current fiscal year is more than $14 million, according to Gill.

During their partnership, the financial support provided by the university to the Huntington, including cash contributions and the free use of the theater, has amounted to more than $40 million, Nicksa said.
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Old 10-09-2015, 01:42 PM   #10
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Re: BU and the Huntington Theatre

I don't believe we are losing the Colonial in the renovations.

But we are pretty clearly losing the BU Theatre!
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Old 10-09-2015, 03:37 PM   #11
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Re: BU and the Huntington Theatre

Based on the Globe article of the other day, the Colonial as a professional theater would cease to exist, replaced by a dining hall, visitor center, and a black box theater, presumably for use by Emerson, only.

http://www.bostonglobe.com/arts/2015...TKN/story.html
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Old 10-09-2015, 03:51 PM   #12
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Re: BU and the Huntington Theatre

The Universities are really sticking it to local culture and the arts. What the fuck?
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Old 10-09-2015, 10:33 PM   #13
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Re: Emerson's Continued Destruction of Downtown Boston

yaaaay
http://www.bostonglobe.com/arts/thea...IaP/story.html

FOR SHAME!

Quote:
News of the theater plans elicited strong reactions among many in the theater community and beyond. As of Friday, more than 2,700 people had signed a petition on change.org expressing concern about the theater.

“Pelton should be beyond ashamed: they are deliberately destroying a landmark,” said Jon Platt, a Tony Award-winning Broadway producer who ran the Colonial for years. “They have the stewardship of the greatest venue for the performing arts in America, and they are willingly destroying it.”

Platt, who oversaw extensive renovations to the Colonial, added: “This is a black eye for the city of Boston. Do they want to make a cafeteria out of the Sistine Chapel because there are fewer Catholics?”

Chris Welling, president of International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees #11, expressed similar outrage: “It is a shame that Emerson College feels no sense of civic responsibility or stewardship that should come with ownership of this historic theater.”
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Old 10-10-2015, 11:43 AM   #14
BussesAin'tTrains
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Boston's Performing Arts and Theater Scene: Past, Present, and Future

With all the theater scene news the last few weeks (Fall 2015) leading to some disparate individual threads in this forum, and given the (potentially damaging) changing face of Boston theater, I'm creating a thread for the discussion of Boston's venerable theater venues, companies and ownership; their past, present and future.

A search of the forum led to a few poorly-used threads for specific venues, but I believe a common space for all theater-related conversation could lead to more discussion.

Here's a rundown of theater news from the last couple of weeks:

- CitiGroup announces it will drop sponsorship of the Citi Performing Arts Center (Wang and Shubert Theatres). Link
- Emerson announces it will close the Colonial Theatre for the second time in two years and this time it may never reopen as a theater. Their most fleshed out plan involves gutting the space for a dining hall and student union. Link, Link, Link
- Boston University announces it's selling the BU Theatre and adjacent parcels, potentially displacing the Tony Award-winning Huntington Theatre Company from their largest venue. This announcement comes after the university refused to sell the theater to the Huntington, in a quest for more money. Link
- The Boston Lyric Opera announces that it is not renewing its lease with Citi Shubert Theatre. Link

Last edited by BussesAin'tTrains; 10-10-2015 at 12:26 PM.
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Old 10-12-2015, 02:11 PM   #15
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Re: Boston's Performing Arts and Theater Scene: Past, Present, and Future

I suspected that when the city of Boston got into bed with expansionist ambitions of colleges such as Emerson there'd be trouble down the road for the fabric and infrastructure that makes the city great. The first sign is when specialized schools became junior colleges, and then became colleges, and then became universities. When will the public stop living in the dream world that colleges and universities are benign institutions that foster learning and intellectual excellence? Most of them are corporations as potentially toxic as big pharm, research, and tech companies that swallow up real estate for their stock holders. They should be paying property taxes rather than getting tax breaks to destroy neighborhoods. In the case of higher ed, the interested parties are those who go after the deep pockets of govt. and private grants that fund particular tenured professors' arcane research, college sports and their facilities, and the bottom line profit, otherwise known as "endowment." Why else are they raising tuition costs beyond the reach of ordinary mortals? Forget American students. There are plenty from overseas who are being subsidized by their governments and embassies. Wake up Bostonians!
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Old 10-13-2015, 09:55 AM   #16
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Re: Boston's Performing Arts and Theater Scene: Past, Present, and Future

You really think the city of Boston would be a great city without the universities and colleges that bring BILLIONS into the city and metro area each year? The brain power that is attracted to the city and eventually settles here is one of the reasons for Boston's continued success and in so many areas. Frankly, Mike, we probably wouldn't be here (literally or figuratively) without those toxic tech, research, and big pharm companies.
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Old 10-13-2015, 10:33 AM   #17
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Re: Boston's Performing Arts and Theater Scene: Past, Present, and Future

^ That's not the point. The point is that the Universities have lost their sense of stewardship in the quest for ever larger endowments and expansion.

Take the case of Emerson in particular. The University is primarily an arts institution that has had good stewardship in the past (renovating and reopening the Paramount, for example). The current administration though seems to be on a quest to create a campus for Emerson in Downtown Boston. That goal is, frankly, delusional. Emerson is a diffuse city school and trying to make it something else is leading it to destroy the fabric of the city around it. They already have sterilized The Alley, they want to fuck with the Colonial too? If Emerson wants a campus they should be like BC and move to the 'burbs. BU successfully sterilized over a mile of Comm Ave in Allston with bland institutional buildings, do we really want Emerson to do the same to the theater district?
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Old 10-13-2015, 12:31 PM   #18
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Re: Boston's Performing Arts and Theater Scene: Past, Present, and Future

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You really think the city of Boston would be a great city without the universities and colleges that bring BILLIONS into the city and metro area each year? The brain power that is attracted to the city and eventually settles here is one of the reasons for Boston's continued success and in so many areas. Frankly, Mike, we probably wouldn't be here (literally or figuratively) without those toxic tech, research, and big pharm companies.
Let's be honest. The only ones that really matter are Harvard, MIT, BU, NEU (recently), and BC. Maybe also Berklee. The others are completely forgettable and would likely have a negligible impact if they just up and disappeared.
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Old 10-13-2015, 03:19 PM   #19
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Re: Boston's Performing Arts and Theater Scene: Past, Present, and Future

Again, I'll say, what would this city be without the colleges and universities in Boston, Cambridge, and the inner metro area (Ill throw Tufts and Brandeis into the mix)? And Meddlepal, tell that to the people who attend those schools, who work at those schools and to the businesses that surround those "completely forgettable" others if they were to just up and leave. The positives of all these schools far, far outweigh any negatives.
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Old 10-13-2015, 11:21 PM   #20
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Re: Boston's Performing Arts and Theater Scene: Past, Present, and Future

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Let's be honest. The only ones that really matter are Harvard, MIT, BU, NEU (recently), and BC. Maybe also Berklee. The others are completely forgettable and would likely have a negligible impact if they just up and disappeared.
+ Tufts
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