Boston Arts Groups Rallying to Save Huntington Theatre

News   Boston Arts Groups Rallying to Save Huntington Theatre Boston arts organizations have launched an online campaign to support the Huntington Theatre Company's mission to retain its longtime artistic home on Huntington Avenue. The loss would leave the company without a mainstage theatre after 33 years.

As previously reported, the company ended its partnership with its main supporter, Boston University, in October last year. The announcement included the news that BU had plans to sell the 890-seat theatre at 264 Huntington Ave. The resident theatre was founded by BU in 1982, and while Huntington went nominally independent in 1986, the university has continued to allow free use of the space.

In response, ArtsBoston, StageSource, The Fenway Alliance and MASSCreative have come together to launch the online #HuntingtonOnHuntington campaign, offering patrons of the arts the chance to sign a petition, share their memories of the theatre and spread the word via social media.

"Although the potential loss of the Huntington Theatre Company’s longtime artistic home is not the only issue facing the broader arts community, it is arguably the most important in its potential to negatively impact the cultural landscape of Boston and Massachusetts," reads the statement on mass-creative.org. "The Tony Award-winning Huntington Theatre Company is a cornerstone of Boston’s theatre community. The Huntington helps drive the local economy, enhances education for youth in Boston and across the Commonwealth, and helps build a vibrant, thriving community."

The Huntington Theatre Company won a special Tony Award for Outstanding Regional Theatre in 2013. Among its many productions that have transferred to New York are Lydia R. Diamond’s Stick Fly on Broadway, and Stephen Karam’s Off-Broadway Sons of the Prophet, which was named a finalist for the 2012 Pulitzer Prize. Its recent production of A Confederacy of Dunces was the highest-grossing show in HTC's 33-year history, with potential plans for a Broadway transfer.

Earlier this year the Boston Globe reported that an investment group had emerged as a front-runner to buy the theatre. In the company's joint statement with BU in October, the university stipulated that any buyer would have to guarantee the Huntington's use of the facility through June 30, 2017.

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