For the first time in 47 years, the stage of the Red Barn Summer Theatre in Frankfort will be empty this summer. The Board of Directors of On-Stage Foundation announced May 11 the Red Barn would cancel the 2020 season.
Stacey Martin, President of the Board, stated in the release: “Our main concern is to ensure a safe, healthy environment for all. With that in mind, we feel it is in the best interests of our patrons and our company to postpone the 2020 season until 2021.”
The Red Barn’s announced season of “Deceiving Granny,” “Murder Among Friends” and the musical “Bright Star” will now be presented in the 2021 season. All ticket orders already purchased for this season will be transferred to next year.
“Please know that even though the barn doors may be staying shut a little bit longer, the theatre is not dark,” Red Barn Artistic Director Michael Taylor stated. “We will continue to update and improve our technology, the atmosphere and the Barn itself.”
This is the first summer since 1973, when the theatre moved to its present location, that the Red Barn will be closed.
“This was such a difficult decision,” said Bethany Sheets, community outreach and box office manager. “There was so much work and planning over the winter, and a great deal of momentum and excitement for this season. We know our audience will be just as disappointed as we are. The loyalty of our patrons, many of whom having been attending the Barn for years, is very moving to me. It’s clear that our patrons love the Barn as much as we do.”
Rex Camp, CAO of On-Stage Foundation, stated he is hopeful a combination of funding and donations may help to make-up for at least a portion of lost ticket income.
“Thanks to the Payroll Protection Program we will be able to employ a skeleton crew for a short period,” Camp stated. “They will work on upkeep and much-needed repairs to the structure. For the rest of the year, we may be very dependent on donations to stay afloat.”
Martin said if possible, they hope to bring some entertainment to Clinton County this season. She said to follow Red Barn Facebook and on the website, redbarntheatre.net, for announcements about possible special performances later this summer.
Donations can be made to the Red Barn Summer Theatre by sending a check by mail or online at redbarntheatre.net. Camp encourages supporters who are able to donate to the Red Barn to keep in mind that the Barn has a non-profit 501(c)(3) tax exempt status so all donations are tax deductible. For questions about donations or ticket orders, email email@example.com or leave a message at 765-659-1657.
The Red Barn Summer Theatre was founded in 1968 by Martin and Carol Ann Henderson. In 1974 the theatre moved to its present location in the Barn on the farm formerly belonging to Joe and Erma Maish.