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Music Theater to get $150K state aid to help move to Norwalk

Memorabilia from past productions at the Music Theatre of Connecticut displayed at its current Westport location.
Memorabilia from past productions at the Music Theatre of Connecticut displayed at its current Westport location.

NORWALK, Conn. – The state is poised to kick in $150,000 toward the Music Theater of Connecticut’s move from Westport to Norwalk, Sen. Bob Duff announced Friday in a press release.

The total cost of the project has been estimated at $600,000, toward which the State Bond Commission is expected to approve $150,000 in support next week.

The new theater will be located at 509 Westport Ave.

Jim Schilling, right, and Kevin Connors, the co-founders of the Music Theatre of Connecticut, sit in the cozy environment of their Westport location.
Jim Schilling, right, and Kevin Connors, the co-founders of the Music Theatre of Connecticut, sit in the cozy environment of their Westport location.

“I am very excited to have the Music Theater of Connecticut relocating to our city and building a new venue to host their first-class productions,” Duff said. “Culture and the arts are essential for any successful city, and as the Music Theater and other Norwalk attractions grow, so will our shops, restaurants and other businesses.”

Mayor Harry Rilling said he welcomes the theater’s relocation to Norwalk.

“Our city is very fortunate to have such a successful theater company moving to town, adding to our growing list of cultural attractions,” Rilling said. “I know that the Music Theater has been seeking a new home for some time, and I couldn’t be more pleased that they found it right here in Norwalk.”

The Music Theater of Connecticut’s new location will include a black box theater with 108 seats that wrap around the main stage on three sides. State of the art sound and lighting will support the productions, as well as rehearsal studios, full costume and scenic shops, dressing rooms and administrative office space.

“We have been on the hunt for a larger space for a very long time. It wasn’t easy, but we finally found it in Norwalk. We are very excited to actually be moving forward, and expect to be open at our new location after Labor Day,” said Kevin Connors, executive artistic director and co-founder of the Music Theater of Connecticut. “We have been very fortunate to have so much support from Senator Duff and the City of Norwalk. This state aid will help us to close the gap between our private fundraising and the total cost of the project. It is great to be part of a community that is so supportive of the arts.”

Founded in 1987 the Music Theater of Connecticut, a 501 (c)(3) non-profit, produces an annual series of Equity productions featuring New York professionals, six annual student productions, and a conservatory-style school of performing arts with curriculum-based training for students ages four through high school, including the nationally recognized College-Bound in the Performing Arts program for performance career-focused high school students.

Duff’s announcement represents the latest of a series of state investments to support Norwalk developments and bolster the arts and culture in the city. Other recent initiatives have included money for Norwalk 2.0 and the renovation of the historic Globe Theater, now the Wall Street Theater.

Comments

11 responses to “Music Theater to get $150K state aid to help move to Norwalk”

  1. Bill

    Awesome, paying money to firms to move within the state for no net job creation…Malloy is a genius

  2. anon

    Good news for Norwalk. @Bill, this is a 501(c)(3), not a hedge fund.

  3. One and Done

    @Bill. You have it all wrong. Moving companies are hiring like crazy. Of course most of their business isn’t just moving the few remaining companies around the state. Rather, they are going gangbusters on moving people out of state.

  4. Admo

    Good luck Jim and Kevin Great success

  5. Jlightfield

    Norwalk has an amazing arts community starting with the exceptional arts, music and drama programs in our public school system. The investment in creating infrastructure for creative economy industries has an immediate return to the local economy.
    .
    You don’t ship jobs creating costumes, designing and building sets, lighting and sound systems etc. overseas. Each of these productions creates local jobs like carpenters, electricians and millinery workers, not to mention the materials used.
    .
    Norwalk has a great opportunity to be a leader in small creative economy job growth in the state and succeed at restoring a vibrant local based small business downtown.

  6. Rod Lopez-Fabrega

    Terrific.

    Norwalk has always had outstanding music programs in its schools. This is a wonderful next step in the right direction.

    High time we acquired a bit of culture.

  7. John Hamlin

    Wonderful news!! The Music Theatre of Connecticut is moving to Nowalk and expanding its facility — a great institution moving to the next level — and moving to Norwalk!

  8. Mike Mushak

    Congratulations!

  9. sofaman

    Great news!

  10. EveT

    Has Music Theater of CT talked to Rental Instrument LLC about some kind of collaboration in their music teaching programs? It might be a win-win.

  11. Allan Broadbent

    Fantastic news! Thrilled to have MTC in Norwalk.

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