Alabama Shakespeare Festival kicks off new season with major renovations

The Alabama Shakespeare Festival is celebrating its 51st season. This season is extra special...
The Alabama Shakespeare Festival is celebrating its 51st season. This season is extra special as ASF wraps up millions of dollars in renovations that are sure to elevate the visitor’s experience.(wsfa 12 news)
Published: Dec. 13, 2022 at 3:18 PM CST|Updated: Dec. 13, 2022 at 6:33 PM CST
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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - The Alabama Shakespeare Festival is celebrating its 51st season. This season is extra special as ASF wraps up millions of dollars in renovations that are sure to elevate the visitors’ experiences.

“It’s the first time the building has had any major renovations done to it since 1985 when this glorious facility was built,” said Executive Director Todd Schmidt.

Schmidt says they worked with the original architect of the building, Tom Blount.

“The brick that was used to build this building is called the Shakespeare brick, and that pattern’s still in existence. So it’s a seamless addition to the building,” said Schmidt.

The front of house renovations includes a new gift shop, a new spacious lounge, two bars on each side of the main lobby and brand-new restrooms on the level when you walk into the theater.

“The goal is always to just enhance the customer experience here at the building and really to fulfill the original dream of the architect when he designed the building. We’ve put some great, beautiful glass doors in our lobby, which used to be solid wood doors, and you couldn’t see out into the beautiful park. And now when you’re in the lobby, it’s much brighter, and you can enjoy being in this fantastic Blount Cultural Park that we’re so fortunate to be part of,” said Schmidt.

A new HVAC system is being installed along with the front of house expansion.

The total cost for the projects $7 million. Schmidt says it was all made possible through funding from private donors and the state.

“As a nonprofit, we would never be able to afford to do these things without those kind of support,” said Schmidt.

The live radio version of “It’s a Wonderful Life” is running through Dec. 31.

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