Blog #14 photo

Members of the Northampton Players, whose photos still hang at the Academy of Music Theatre.

By Executive Director Debra J’Anthony

In the summer of 1919, the Northampton Players were disbanded. It had been a difficult time for area residents on both sides of the argument, as to whether the City of Northampton should continue to support a stock company. In the end, prodded by the additional financial burden of the war, the Northampton Players would not be back for another season. It was time to move on, as one resident stated in a July 9th Gazette editorial:

“Let us hope that the fall will bring a settlement of the matter and that all the harsh words and criticisms which came out during the time of argument will be forgotten. May our spirit of love and loyalty to Northampton and her interests overcome all feeling which might take away from our fine reputation or any sting which might remain to hurt when this matter is referred to as past unpleasantness.”

By the fall of 1921, the management was in consultation with Goldstein Brothers, who operated nickelodeons – small storefront movie houses. In addition, the board of trustees reviewed its rental fees, and lowered fees for local arts organizations. Described in the minutes from the February 14, 1922 meeting:

“It was voted to fix the rental price of the Academy for concerts of municipal or charitable character at seventy-five dollars and when an entrance fee is charged, the price is to be one hundred dollars. This amplifies the schedule of rating, which was passed at a meeting of the Board on December 1, 1919. “

We continue to keep rates affordable for community-based arts organizations by raising 50% of the cost!

Help restore the Academy! We’re replacing the seats in the auditorium, repairing and repainting the ornate plaster, insulating and replacing the stage roof, and adding aisle lighting. Learn more.