Lake Dillon Theatre Company moves into temporary Silverthorne location
Before its 2016 season started in early March, volunteers and staff of the Lake Dillon Theatre Company (LDTC) had to pack up 20 years of memories. Costumes, sets and props were put in boxes in preparation of a move just a few miles down the highway.
After more than two decades in the 100-year-old building in the heart of Dillon, the theater company will be moving to a brand-new home in Silverthorne. The 14,000-square-foot space will house not only LDTC performances, but will also include offices, rehearsal space, classrooms and a spacious lobby. Groundbreaking for new multi-purpose theater, next door to the Silverthorne Pavilion at Fourth Street, will begin in May, with a planned opening for spring 2017.
But in the meantime, the theater needed a space to operate out of for its 2016 season. With its lease in the Dillon building ending April 1, LDTC temporarily relocated to the Green Village, Outlets at Silverthorne, 246V Rainbow Drive, next to the Colorado Welcome Center.
“When you’ve been in a facility for 20 years, it’s like being in a house for 20 years and trying to move out,” said Megan Stake, marketing and development coordinator for LDTC. “We’ve converted a shoe store into a theater — we knew it was never going to be easy but we had a great team working.”
Volunteers from the community helped with the move and assisted in painting and building at the interim theater. They will still be moving things over from the old building in the next couple weeks, but the temporary space is up and running for the theater’s first performance of the 2016 season, “Dancing Lessons.”
“The town of Silverthorne is very much working with us during our transition,” Stake said. “It’s worked out really, really well, and it’s so nice for us — especially in the lobby — to have this extra space.”
The seating arrangement in the interim theater will change configuration for every show, seating up to 110 people during the summer cabaret series.
The temporary location allows LDTC to continue without any changes to its regular programming schedule.
“The theater experience is identical,” Stake said. “You can expect exactly the same as what we had in Dillon. But some of the benefits of coming (to the Outlets) are the extra space that we have in the lobby. It’s a lot more comfortable, we have some things to check out with the new facility on the walls, and we have some interactive art pieces. We just have more space to move around and enjoy the experience as a whole.”
PART OF A BIGGER PLAN
The town of Silverthorne has been working on an urban renewal plan for years, with efforts to create a distinct downtown core near Fourth Street. In 2013, the Economic Development Advisory Committee recommended the town use the arts as a tool to promote growth and form an identity, and the theater aids in that effort.
“It’s one of the foundational pieces of our arts and culture strategic plan,” said Ryan Hyland, Silverthorne’s town manager. “They bring people and vibrancy to an area that that’s one of the main things we are lacking.”
Joanne Cook, recreation and culture director for the town, said the Lake Dillon Theatre Company brings a nationally known brand to the location.
“We know that they certainly stand out in the region and the state and even nationwide, so to house them in our town center is an opportunity of a lifetime for us,” she said.
Stake said the town officials have been very welcoming to the members of LDTC.
“It’s really great to be a part of this arts culture they are creating in Silverthorne — it’s great to be an integral part of that,” she said. “We’re excited to see the new facility grow and the opportunity that it creates for the community, and to be part of that with Silverthorne.”
LDTC and the town of Silverthorne are working together on a groundbreaking celebration for April 23. It will not only mark the beginning of work on the new building, but will also be a way to commemorate Silverthorne’s plan to create a more vibrant arts culture.
“It’s groundbreaking for a lot more than just the performing arts facility, which is more than just the theater,” Hyland said. “It’s kind of a big kick off for the arts and culture strategic plan and the new direction and new place that arts and culture has in our overall philosophy.”
The future building — joint project of the town and theater company — is roughly six times larger than the theater’s space in Dillon.
On Saturday, March 19, there will be a panel discussion on the collaboration between the town of Silverthorne and the Lake Dillon Theatre Company. Officials with LDTC will discuss the theater’s original days as a nonprofit that produced concerts and its growth to a professional regional theater and its move to the new facility. Representatives from the town will be on hand to discuss its downtown revitalization efforts and answer any questions from the community.
Panelists include artistic director Chris Alleman and Josh Blanchard with the LDTC and the town of Silverthorne’s Cook and Hyland.
“A lot of what we will talk about is the symbiotic relationship that we saw a couple years ago that has led us to this partnership,” Hyland said. “Where this is exactly the type of thing you need to catalyze and redevelop the downtown, when that is what your community has been asking for for a number of years.”
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