The Lightboard Challenge
The Lightboard Challenge
Ever since our first informal reunion in 2000, many of us have asked: what could
alumni do so that today’s and tomorrow’s Mimes & Mummers experience the best of
what we enjoyed during our days on the Collins stage? Well, inspired by the
150th anniversary of the Mimes and Mummers, Mimes alum Ed Lenci (FCRH ’85)
presented a matching gift challenge to us.
With ambitions to play a part in the restoration of our fabled theater, the
Mimes & Mummers Alumni Association committed to raise funds toward a new
lightboard system for Collins, and Ed Lenci agreed to match, up to $12,500, each
dollar we contributed. The result--a total of $28,505 exceeding our fundraising
goal by 12%!
We can certainly afford to purchase a state of the art lightboard now, but the
electrical system in Collins is outdated and cannot handle a new lightboard.
Major electrical work - part of a renovation of the theatre - has to happen
On April 17, 2009, Chris Rodgers, Asst. Dean of Student
Affairs provided an update for us on the Collins renovation project:
“Though it's certainly taken longer than we would have liked, we have been working
with our Facilities and Engineering people and the contractor, and are putting finishing touches
on a plan to make the improvements in the right way…We rapidly learned through the consultants and
our own engineers that simply purchasing the equipment noted by the alums/donors was not going to be possible.
The new equipment purchases intended by the alums/donors require improvements and renovations, some of which
are to infrastructure and are extensive. The planning has been slow as it has gotten more complicated than
we anticipated. Of course, a complete renovation is on our wish list at this point, as the space has the
potential to be quite beautiful. We have also wanted to avoid completely shutting down productions in
Collins for Mimes during the academic year.
Due to delays, we have switched our lighting design contractor and plan to give the final go-ahead for
work at the end of May.
The following general work is scheduled for this summer:
• New Lights
• New Dimmers
• The addition of Spot Lights
• New rigging for the lights at the back of the theater and suspended from the ceiling (and just above the stage)
We are very happy with the rapid work of the new designer, who has proposed renovations and improvements that will be quick and within the limited budget.”
Since this report in April, we have confirmed that the final go-ahead has been given, and the work will happen this summer. Obviously this is wonderful news for all Mimes Alum! We will keep you posted….
In case you've forgotten, below
are pictures of what the lightboard currently looks like. It is well over
half a century old.