Sneak peak Monday at Hepburn theater

Published: Saturday, May 23, 2009
By Rachael Scarborough King, Register Staff

OLD SAYBROOK — The public will have the chance to look around the still under-construction Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center during an open house Monday.

Executive Director Chuck Still said that the open house will allow people to see the progress on the theater, which has been under construction for about two years.

“We are going to open it up to the public after the (Memorial Day) parade so they’ll get a chance to see what’s going on inside,” Still said. “You’ll get a real sense of what the theater is going to look like in terms of being a room.”

The theater is in the “painting and molding stage,” he said.

The plans for the $6 million renovation of the center, which is at 302 Main St., include a 250-seat theater and a small museum about Katharine Hepburn, who lived in Old Saybrook until her death in 2003.

The 1911 building was originally a theater but was later used as Town Hall.

The renovation is being funded by $4.3 million from the town and $1.7 being raised by the center’s board of trustees, Still said.

Although the building is still under construction, Still said he is hoping that performances will begin in August and he has some events tentatively scheduled.

“It has been a much longer process than anybody anticipated, but it’s an old building and whenever you’re renovating an old building it takes longer than you think it will,” he said “It was actually used constantly until the last two years, so a lot had happened inside of it and it’s taken some time to restore it back to being a theater.”

The open house is scheduled to take place from noon to 2 p.m. Monday.

There will be refreshments — including Hepburn’s favorite brownie recipe — provided by Frankie & Gianni’s and Starbucks.

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