Monday, January 21, 2013


Built by Warner Brothers Studio, opening on August 19, 1931 as a movie palace, the Warner Theatre, 68 Main Street, in Torrington is replete with art-deco designs, murals depicting sites all over Litchfield County and a splendid star-shaped chandelier crowning the grand auditorium.

After an illustrious history, the theater fell on hard times and was almost destroyed.  Due to the diligence of some concerned citizens, it reopened with a recreation of its original 1931 Gala on May 22, 1983, complete with marching bands and vintage cars and the Nutmeg Ballet's production of "Coppella."

Now as a National Historic Site, the Warner enjoys status as a complete center for the arts, offering dance, music and theater productions, both community and national tours.  It has been called the "finest surviving Modernistic theatre in Connecticut," and serves 80,000 patrons year-round.

Upcoming attractions include the Warner Stage Company's production of "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat" by Andrew Lloyd Webber, Friday, February 1 and 8 at 8 p.m., Saturday, February 2 and 9 at 8 p.m. and Sunday, February 3 and 10 at 2 p.m.  Straight from the Bible, come with the whole family to witness this amazing musical tale of a favored son Joseph who is sent on a mystifying journey to Egypt when his jealous brothers sell him into slavery.  How the family is reunited is a joyous event to witness.  Tickets are $20-33.50.  Call the Warner at 860-489-7180 or go online at

The Metropolitan Opera Series will feature a broadcast in HD preceded by a complimentary lecture.  February's offering will be on Saturday the 16th at 1 p.m. of Verdi's Rigoletto, transformed to Las Vegas in 1960, with a passing nod to the antics of the Rat Pack.Tickets are $25. The magical fairy tale of "Sleeping Beauty" has been transformed by the writing team of Matthew and Barbara Valenti into a charming musical brought to life by the students of the Warner Theatre Center for Arts Education and performers from the Warner Stage Company.  Bring the family to discover the transforming nature of a kiss to end evil and allow love to triumph.  See this beloved fairy tale Saturday, February 16 at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. and Sunday, February 17 at 2 p.m.  Tickets are $15.

Also on the theatrical agenda is the tale of a stage-struck detective whose skills are brought to the fore when the leading lady disappears on opening night in the musical comedy whodunit "Curtains."  Emmy Award winning director producer Rob Schiller will fly in to direct this Kander and Ebb old-fashioned musical romp with murder clearly in the script.  Performances are Saturday, January 26 at 8 p.m., Sunday, January 27 at 2 p.m., Friday, February 1 at 8 p.m., Saturday, February 2 at 8 p.m. and Sunday, February 3 at 2 p.m.  Tickets are $20-33.50.

More February offerings include the theatrical farce "Moon Over Buffalo" Friday, February 15 to Saturday, February 23 and Shakespeare's "As You Like It" on Saturday, February 23. Other programs offered are the International Artist Series, Great American Story Series and Slightly Shakespeare Program as well as Master Classes in choreography, play writing, directing and auditioning.  Classes in tap dancing to writing to singing to acting are also offered for all ages, child to adult.

Take advantage of all of the exciting theatrical adventures available at Torrington's pride and joy, the Warner.  See you in the audience or on the stage.

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