Children’s Musical Theaterworks gets extension to use Memorial Auditorium through 2019


Good news for Children’s Musical Theaterworks: After nearly getting kicked out of the city-owned Fresno Veterans Memorial Auditorium late last year because of that aging building’s safety issues, the theater company got a one-year reprieve and was allowed to stage productions there through 2018. Now it’s been granted another one-year extension on that agreement, through 2019.

CMT board president K.C. Rutiaga tells me:

The city has agreed to allow us another season, as we have shown our diligence in seeking a donor for the theater (no news on that yet). So we are working on titles for the 2019 season and will be announcing them July 13 at the opening of “Once on This Island.”

If you recall, the city agreed to let the theater company continue to use the auditorium after a careful assessment of outstanding safety issues. For example, there are restrictions on the use of the fly rails (the equipment used to move backdrops, scenery and scrims up and down) and the electrical equipment. The estimate to fix all the theater’s problems is in the $1 million range. CMT continues to court big-ticket donors for those improvements.

In other news, CMT will be staging a new style of fundraiser in August: a show titled “CMT’s Got Talent.” This competition-style event has a grand prize package that includes a $500 cash prize, tuition for CMT’s 2019 season and a “basket of opportunities” of acting, dance, and vocal lessons from professionals in the San Joaquin Valley. The event will be 5:30 p.m. Aug. 17 and promises to be a swanky evening that includes no host wine bar, h’ordeuvres, silent auction, and talent show.


Auditions for “CMT’s Got Talent” will be 4:30 p.m. June 26 and 12:30 p.m. June 28 at Sierra Vista Mall. Here are details:

cmt talent

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Covering the arts online in the central San Joaquin Valley and beyond. Lover of theater, classical music, visual arts, the literary arts and all creative endeavors. Former Fresno Bee arts critic and columnist. Graduate of Columbia University and Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. Excited to be exploring the new world of arts journalism.

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