It's been occupied ever since.
The Tarabino family operated it then and more than 130 years later, the family still owns the landmark building, but now it houses something entirely different -- a repertory theater.
"In 2000, Fred and I moved to
The couple owned the
"We came here not to do theater, to retire, but we fell in love with
"When we got more involved with the community, we realized that there might be something we could do to help spur an economic stimulus, so this organization was created in collaboration with
"We did that all at the college, but one of our goals was to restore a historic building downtown and have the theater downtown as a tourist draw," Vaugeois said.
"When this building became available we talked to the landlords and said we wanted to create a theater in their building. They were thrilled to have yet another tenant in their building."
The couple moved into the building in
"This building is owned by
Vaugeois said she asked the brothers to name the theater the
"They wanted it to be called
"They weren't interested in promoting their family name. They wanted to maintain the history."
The Vaugeoises also run the year-round
"This is where the local actors perform. We provide training and classes for local people who want to learn not only about acting, but also designing, lights and sound and promotion," Vaugeois said.
The professional company, which started its new production earlier this month, has actors who come from
"Our goal is to build this so it is self-sufficient. We have a new director moving here from
"We have not touched the integrity of this historic building," he said. "Except for a few screw holes," his wife chimed in. The couple said they have had a lot of help with equipment from people who got their start with them in
"It's amazing how they come through to help us create this theater,"
She said she enjoys the small town atmosphere in
"One time I was in a grocery store and a women told me thank you for what we were doing. She walked away and I thought, 'Oh my goodness, all of those years of schooling. All of those years of competing at the level we had to compete at
"That was all getting us ready to come here because L.A. didn't need another professional theater, but this place had nothing like this. That is so positive to us."
The summer shows include a performance of "
For more information, call 719-846 4765.
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