The Grand Theatre rises again for Road Company’s 2013 season in Willimastown, N.J.
February 27, 2013By Caroline Stewart
For Williamstown, New Jersey and the larger community of Delaware Valley theatre-goers, the roof collapse at the Grand Theatre in May 2010 was a devastating tragedy. With the entire venue destroyed, the future of the building and its long-time crew of actors, Road Company, was far from certain.
But after tireless work, fundraising, advocacy and numerous meetings with architects and contractors, the fruits of nearly three years of labor can now be enjoyed.
The Grand Theatre reopened its doors at a Grand Gala on Feb. 16, marking the beginning of a new chapter for the Road Company and its 86-year-old home. Those in attendance included the theatre’s original owners, the Lanzalotti family, whom built, owned and operated the theatre from 1924 – 1968; and members of the Speeney family whos decedent matriarch, Julie Speeney founded the Road Company in 1976. In 2008, the Road Company, now helmed by Suzanne Baldino Jones, daughter of Julie Speeney and director of The Road Company's fall 2013 production of Assassins, took ownership of the historic venue.
The 2013 season is just beginning with productions including, The Wedding Singer, A Christmas Story and a summer theatre camp rendition of Disney’s Aladdin, amongst others, still to come.