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Orchestra to take downtown theater

by Karl Richter | May 31, 2021 at 2:00 a.m.

TEXARKANA, Texas -- The City Council unanimously approved a contract with the Texarkana Symphony Orchestra to take over management of the Perot Theatre.

The contract is for $272,207 for three years with three one-year renewal options. A resident advisory committee recommended the orchestra after evaluating its proposal and those of two other organizations, the Texarkana Regional Arts and Humanities Council and VenuWorks, an entertainment venue management company.

Before the vote, orchestra director Andrew Clark and musical director Philip Mann gave a brief presentation explaining their vision for the theater as a community hub for the performing arts.

The Texarkana Symphony Orchestra wants the theater to be "a familiar and special place to everyone in Texarkana," as well as the first place locals think of when considering entertainment options, Mann said.

Plans include convening community committees to get input about programming, prioritizing needed repairs and renovations and expanding the theater's offerings to include national and international programs, speakers and Broadway shows while making the theater accessible to local talent.

The council got its first official look at a proposal to create a downtown entertainment district where open containers of alcohol would be allowed outdoors.

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