When the Brown County Playhouse season closed Aug. 22 with "The Last Night of Ballyhoo," it might truly have been the last.
Indiana University has said it will announce on Friday the closing of the playhouse
An e-mail this afternoon to town, county and tourism leaders warned of a news release to come Friday morning. The e-mail came from Jonathan Michaelsen, chair and producer of the Brown County Playhouse for the IU Department of Theatre and Drama.
"This has been a very difficult decision for the Department of Theatre and Drama, Indiana University and me personally," Michaelson wrote. "However I am afraid with tough economic times, declining audiences and increasing costs, we cannot keep the doors of the Playhouse open.
I don't go to that many plays, mainly because I find the suspension of disbelief required to take my mind out of the theater and put it into the illusion being created is just too much work to make the experience as entertaining as it should be. Perhaps it's a character flaw.
But I've been a regular visitor to Nashville (and nearby Bean Blossom) for more than 30 years, and an evening at the Brown County Playhouse has frequently been a pleasant part of the trip. The relationship between the IU theater department and Nashville has always seemed like such a beneficial one for both. Hope the town can make good use of the theater.
"Tough economic times, declining audience and increasing costs.' Not the last time we'll see that line, is it?