By Natalie MAIER
On April 23, an informal meeting regarding the future of the Alex Theatre took place in the Community Room at the ISIC Luxury Apartments in Glendale.
Elissa Glickman, CEO of Glendale Arts which manages the Alex Theatre, spoke about the new expansion project for the Alex, which will provide a 6,400 square foot expansion of the Theatre’s backstage facilities. Additional dressing rooms, storage and shop space and the installation of a new freight elevator will be also be installed.
The eight-month construction project which will break ground on July 1 and will continue through March 2014. The Alex will be closed for performances from July to November 2013.
“We have to make sure that the amenities that the Alex Theatre offers are on par with what other venues in the area have to offer,” Glickman said. “So we needed to increase our dressing room space and, more importantly, change our loading capacity capabilities in order to remain competitive.”
Nina Crowe, the Business Development and Sales manager of Glendale Arts, said that, in the past, some performances had large casts and the Alex wasn’t able to provide enough dressing rooms. Tents had to be set up in the back parking lot in order to accommodate the large number of people.
It was often cold and wet for the cast members in the tents during the winter season, Crowe added.
“[The expansion project] will help us attract a different type of program, something with a larger cast or bigger set,” Crowe said. “So I think ultimately it will be better because we will be able to better serve the community by bringing different types of shows that can’t be there now.”
Glickman and Crowe agreed that the Glendale community has shown a lot of support for Glendale Arts and the Alex Theatre.
“[The community is] always willing to give us ideas and suggestions,” Glickman said. She added that the community has especially shown support through this year’s I Heart Glendale Arts fundraiser.
Community members are encouraged to donate online at http://www.glendalearts.org/iheart or through Glendale Art’s Facebook page. The goal is to raise $40,000 by the end of May. According to Glickman, they are about halfway to their goal.
After the expansion project is finished, Glickman hopes to increase programming at the Theatre. The Alex is booked between 180 and 200 days a year, and she hopes to bring that number up to 250.
“We’d really like to attract new artists which can then attract a new audience as well as our current audience,” she said.
The “new audience” would be a younger demographic of ages between 25-45.