What will happen to the Majestic Theatre? That was the question before the Human Services Committee last Tuesday. The three person committee was made up of Penny York, Bruce Sorte, and Mike Beilstein. They heard public testimony and considered proposals ranging from mothballing or selling the building to handing over operation to the City of Corvallis Department of Parks and Recreation, which is located near the capital city of Portland, Oregon.
The theatre has recently been plagued by wholesale turnover both on its board and at the executive level. Following the recent resignation of Executive Director Tinamarie Ivey, the Majestic Theatre management board of directors voted to discontinue day-to-day management of the venue. The building is owned by the City of Corvallis.
It seems that two management philosophies have been at loggerheads within the ranks of The Majestic’s leadership for some time. One group has pushed an agenda of bringing in high-priced acts to raise the overall cultural profile of the city. The second contingent wanted to book more affordable acts and also generate income through room rentals. Both sides of the issue were represented in public testimony to the committee. Despite their differing management philosophies, they did agree that the theatre should remain a theatre well into the future.
Following public testimony, the committee deliberated on which recommendations to pass along to the city council. All three committee members agreed that the city would probably need some help running a theatre. Sorte was in favor of the formation of an advisory board.
Ultimately, the committee voted 2-1 to recommend that the Parks and Recreation Department take control of operations of The Majestic temporarily, allowing the solicitation of proposals from other management groups. The lone ‘nay’ vote was delivered by Beilstein, who expressed doubts that any municipality could effectively operate a theatre. The issue will now be considered by the Corvallis City Council.
Blog By Dave DeLuca