The Newburyport Education Foundation’s Auditorium campaign’s goal was to raise funds to renovate the auditorium at Newburyport High School. The purpose of the project was to update the infrastructure of the production facility that will provide students at the school and the community with an auditorium that is up to code and has modern capabilities to support arts, meetings, city and other cultural events. Specifically, the project updated the key systems that serve the auditorium which have deteriorated to the point that they were not usable or have very limited capabilities.
“Being part of a community so passionate about what this program is doing is a pretty magical feeling.”
– Chloe O., 12th Grade
The work had three phases:
- Phase 1 – renovation of the lighting dimmer board, completed November 2015
- Phase 2 – renovation of the sound system and replacement of a light panel, completed November 2016
- Phase 3 – replacement of the stage rigging and additional LED lighting, completed September 2017
These systems are the backbone of providing quality productions in the auditorium as well as the key components for teaching students about production management.
Newburyport High School’s Auditorium serves as a hub for the school as well as the community. Events ranging from school assemblies, concerts, theatre productions, lectures, district professional development, alumni events, athletic banquets and meetings and parent information nights are some of the many school-related events that occur in the space. The community also utilizes the space for political events such as mayoral debates, as well as private music events, dance recitals and even body-building competitions.
Due to the advancements in technology and the age of the systems in the space, the High School was unable to accommodate all of these events over the last several years. The middle school is now equipped with state-of-the-art technology, and as students matriculate to the high school it is important to offer them the same, if not better, opportunities to enhance their study of Stage Technology. In the last decade, numerous students have been accepted to competitive programs in Acting and Technical Theatre and this is due in large part to the training they receive at NHS.