For the latest chapter in our history of Huntington community theatre companies, here's a look at the group based out of City Hall:
The 5th Avenue Theatre Company was founded about 16 years ago for a unique purpose: to raise money for the City of Huntington Foundation.
Back in 1991 the Foundation began the restoration of City Hall's auditorium. The city had planned to gut the old auditorium to create office space, but interior designer Jean Carlo Stephenson urged City Council to reconsider. She was the Foundation's first director, and because of her efforts, the auditorium is now named after her.
But maintaining and making improvements to the facility takes a lot of cash. To raise money, the 5th Avenue Theatre Company has staged a number of shows, including Annie, West Side Story, Carousel, Christmas Carol, White Christmas, The Music Man, Camelot, Man of La Mancha and 9 to 5.
Because of the uneven nature of bringing in money on shows (not every show makes money, as anyone in theatre can tell you), 5th Avenue has been cautious and focuses on presenting strong musicals.
In the meantime, the organization continues making improvements to the auditorium, including a new and improved sound system.
But 5th Avenue has been quiet for some time. Their only show in recent years was a small, two-person production that received almost no publicity. The folks involved with it say it hasn't shut down - they're just in the process of planning their future shows. Here's hoping we'll see more from them soon!
Next: We'll learn about another long-running theatre group in Huntington - one that just recently closed its doors.