Given the number of arts and cultural groups that have shut down this year – Studio Roanoke, Theater at Lime Kiln, Arts Council of the Blue Ridge, Shadowbox Cinema, Blue Ridge Dinner Theatre – it’s a breath of fresh air to hear that a theater once thought defunct is coming back.
Marlow and Karon Ferguson purchased a building on Williamson Road to found Star City Playhouse in 2007. Yet by August 2010, the building had been purchased by the bank at auction to avoid foreclosure. Since May 2011, the theater company has been homeless.
Come Monday, Star City Playhouse and its five trailer-loads of costumes and props will start moving into Metropolitan Community Church of the Blue Ridge at 806 Jamison Ave. S.E.
The theater will make use of a community room in the church’s basement that holds 100 people and has a small stage. Star City Playhouse will man the box office and then donate a portion of the proceeds to the church, said the Rev. Joe Cobb, Metropolitan Community Church pastor.
Marlow Ferguson, 75, enthuses about the ample parking and storage space. “It’s amazing how many rooms this building has.”
He said he hopes to produce the first play in the new location in February.