Peter Applebome's Our Towns column made a foray upstate to see how the Rosendale Theatre Collective was doing in its quest to buy the town's much-loved theater. Quite well, he reports:
And almost immediately, as if by osmosis, the idea rose for the Rosendale Theater Collective to take it over and run it as a nonprofit institution. This was not startling. Such things exist. But they don’t necessarily exist in a rural town of 6,400 where $380,000 is needed to buy the local theater and perhaps $600,000 to fully restore and upgrade it. Nor do they necessarily work with an arty collective some of whose members have names like Fre Atlast and f-stop Fitzgerald.
But then, local characters aside, the collective also had lots of high-powered friends and advisers — performers like Aidan Quinn, Mandy Patinkin and Melissa Leo; heads of regional performing arts centers; local businesses. And Rosendale turns out to be a lot less sleepy than it looks.
The Rosendale Theatre Collective has until May 15 to come up with a $160,000 down payment on the building. Looks like they've got a good shot at getting $50,000 of that from Pepsi, which is running an online popularity contest to award $1,300,000 in grants by the end of the month. As of this morning, the RTC's project was No. 2 on the site, behind a technology proposal from a school in Oklahoma.