Sorg Opera Revitalization Group (SORG) invites you and your friends to our upcoming holiday open house, Sunday, December 4th from 11:00a.m. to 4:00p.m. This is a good chance to see the Sorg Opera House theater dressed for the holidays, take family photos, check out our movie theater seat sale, try our new “Music Hall” seats, listen to the new acoustics, join the seat sponsor members, find a few last minute gift items, and meet members of the SORG board. Admission is free and open to the public. Come and catch the vision!
Located at 63 S. Main St. in Middletown, Ohio, this Sunday is a great opportunity to roll back 70 years of time and see the full theater as designed following removal of the1940’s era drop ceiling formally attached to the second balcony. The removal now allows a full view of the historic balcony from the main level and a great view of the stage from the balcony’s bench seats. “The installation of the donated Music Hall seats pushed the planned demolition of the drop ceiling forward.” noted SORG’s Chuck Miller. “We have Hosea Project Movers to thank for all the help.”
“We’ve done our best to create a wonderful holiday scene for young and old alike,” SORG board member Bob Melloh said. “It took five days and some borrowed items but I must say it looks great.”
The holiday garb features an antique sleigh, Christmas trees and lights, holiday music and more. “I hope families will join us, bring cameras and simply take a moment to sit in our new seats while capturing our vision of a fully functioning performing arts center in the near future,” added board member Denise Brodsky.
SORG’s Jeff Johnson said, “While the acoustics were great, we can not wait to hear the improvement of the theater’s sound with the seats completely installed.”
Visitors may want to take part in the “Take a Seat” capital campaign for a unique holiday gift. “We have had the good fortune of having over 600 gently used movie theater seats from a chain in Northern Kentucky which we held as backup until Music Hall made their donation.” SORG’s Ken Bowman added. “There are three styles, low, medium and high back all in shades of grey, many with cup holders, most in very good shape. We’re seeking a $10.00 per seat donation to help fund our code work.” A SORG “Take a Seat” T-shirt is included with a $15,00 donation. Seats will be on display and are currently in pieces simplifying transport. There is also a limited inventory of Cincinnati Music Hall seats available for a donation of $100 a pair.
SORG is in the midst of a challenge grant to help raise the funds necessary to repair the backstage left roof, repair/replace gutters and downspouts. The challenge will pay for one-half of the total estimated repair costs of $12,500, if we can raise the remaining $6,250 by December 15th. “This is a great building saving opportunity that we can’t let slip away,” said Chuck Miller. To date, SORG has raised just over half of the challenge grant or $3502 and needs only $2,748 more to reach this challenge.
SORG’s Denise Brodsky offered additional ways to support the theater’s restoration. “Seeing how beautiful the hall is with the “new” seats, we hope others will join our seat sponsorship campaign.” Details will be available this Sunday but include: seat sponsors at three different levels across the two year membership including ticket pre-sale rights, ticket discounts and a plaque honoring the sponsorship. All funds raised will benefit SORG’s all-volunteer efforts.
SORG’s Ken Bowman noted the group cannot have a seated audience until temporary code work is approved. “It could cost up to $200,000 to get into compliance. Work will include new fire escape doors, sprinkler system rebuild, emergency lighting repairs, temporary HVAC for the theater, and restoring the bathrooms to working and attractive order.” SORG’s Denise Brodsky noted that “SORG has generated $625,000 in gifts, our own funds, a forgivable loan, grants and in-kind donations – all invested in the project. Adding a successful ‘code campaign’ to our records will help our long-term fundraising work. Hosting an audience will certainly raise community awareness regarding this beautiful building.”
ABOUT SORG REVITALIZATION GROUP:
SORG is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization established to provide programming and services that make an essential contribution to the cultural economy, economic revitalization, education, and quality of life of Middletown, Ohio and its region. To do so, SORG proposes to revitalize and re-establish the Sorg Opera House as a multi-purpose venue and a catalyst for community economic development in downtown Middletown.
For more information, visit www.Facebook.com/SorgOperaHouse/.
**Information provided in press release from Sorg Opera House dated November 30, 2016.