COOPERSTOWN, 09/17/11 – The Glimmerglass Festival hosted a ceremonial groundbreaking with State Senator James L. Seward on the planned future site of the company’s new rehearsal hall Saturday morning at 4152 U.S Highway 20 in Warren, New York.
“I very much recognize that not only is Glimmerglass a cultural icon, it is a big part of our economic region,” said Senator Seward. “People come here from all over the world to visit the opera. While they are here, they stay in our hotels and bed & breakfasts, dine in our restaurants and frequent our shops.”
Seward, Glimmerglass Festival Artistic & General Director Francesca Zambello and Glimmerglass Board Chair Elizabeth Eveillard spoke to a group of supporters at the site.
“This is a great day for Glimmerglass,” Eveillard said. “We are able to break ground on a rehearsal hall which will help our artists to enhance their ability to provide excellent performances for our audiences.”
The groundbreaking celebrated the opera and musical theater festival’s future rehearsal hall funded by the Dormitory Authority of the State of New York.
“There is a tight connection between the arts and the economy of a region,” Eveillard continued. “And no one understands that more than Senator Seward, who really championed the idea of a rehearsal hall.”
Zambello explained, “A rehearsal space is like a factory for us. This is where we make what we sell. We are grateful to Senator Seward, the State of New York and the town of Warren for helping to make this a reality.”
Engineered by McManus Engineering Group LLC of Cooperstown, the new rehearsal space will be climate controlled and contain two 60’ by 60’ rooms, so that two rehearsals may occur concurrently. Construction is anticipated to begin in the spring of 2012.
The Glimmerglass Festival rehearses for its four mainstage productions in community buildings throughout Cherry Valley, Cooperstown, Fly Creek, Oneonta, Sharon Springs, Springfield Center and Richfield Springs. Zambello said that this will continue, but that the new space will provide a home base for the company’s rehearsals.
Seward said he is a native of the area and remembers when Glimmerglass performed in the Cooperstown High School auditorium.
The company performed in Cooperstown High School from when it was founded in 1975 until the Alice Busch Opera Theater opened in 1987. “This is a great day, and all I can say is, thinking back to those days in the high school auditorium, we’ve come a long way, baby,” Seward added.
The Glimmerglass Festival is a non-profit professional opera and musical theater company that sells more than 30,000 tickets to its mainstage productions each year. For more information on The Glimmerglass Festival, visit www.glimmerglass.org.