Thalian Hall to debut new look in May
By John Staton
Published: Sunday, May 2, 2010 at 9:38 p.m.
“We’ve got right much more room here,” said Thalian Hall executive director Tony Rivenbark, showing a visitor through the facility’s newly expanded offices. “But we’re still living in a state of chaos.”
Not for much longer.
With grand reopening galas scheduled for May 14-15 to be followed by a series of public events, the historic and revered Wilmington theater built in 1858 was buzzing with activity last week, as it has since its main stage was closed for renovations at the end of September. As laborers finished up work on the $3.6 million project – painting, installing carpets and rebuilding the bathrooms, among a dozen or more other tasks – Rivenbark moved between Thalian’s three floors, overseeing it all.
“1999 is when we began the planning for this,” Rivenbark said.
While giving his visitor a tour, one of the first things Rivenbark showed off was a line of skyward-facing windows above the stairs leading to the balcony. The windows delineate the original stage house, the exterior wall of which has been on the inside of the building since Thalian’s 1990 expansion, from the lobby.