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Maryland Theatre Gets Upgrades, and Plans for More

"It's kind of like going from driving an old beat up Jalopy to getting into a Mercedes Bens. It's a night and day process. We've had nothing but compliments. The audience has been very, very supportive,” said Walters.

HAGERSTOWN, Md. - The show must always go on, and after 98 years the Maryland Theatre is still going strong.

Big changes are coming to the historic Hagerstown site. The Maryland Theater just updated its sound system and the upgrades don't end there. 

The theatre was partially destroyed by a fire back in 1974 and plans to rebuild what they lost almost 40 years ago.

"The goal of the current board of directors was to assess the current facility and fix anything that needed attention in the current facility, but yes the long term goal is to expand the Maryland Theater," said Jessica Green, operations manager of the Theatre.

But they're starting with the technical upgrades with the new sound system being unveiled and dedicated, Tuesday afternoon. Stephen Walters, owner of Omega Media, said he helped design and install the sound equipment.

"It's kind of like going from driving an old beat up Jalopy to getting into a Mercedes Bens. It's a night and day process. We've had nothing but compliments. The audience has been very, very supportive,” said Walters. “Finally we can give the audience what they really deserve to get in the Maryland Theatre."

From the ballet to rock and roll and acts like the Trans Siberian Orchestra, the Theatre's new sound equipment will be able to adjust accordingly. This is good for performers and great for audience members. 

The sound system cost $50,000 and replaced a 30-year-old system. Jessica Green said this is an investment not just for the theatre but for the community.

"They are assessing everything mechanical, electrical, everything structurally, so it's a work in process and of course the integrity of the historic structure is always a primary concern, but the safety is as well," said Green.

There were some problems with the plaster on the ceiling this past Sunday, November 3 when pieces fell off into seats and down onto the floor during a performance. Jessica Green said this is a safety issue, but they hope to have everything resolved in time for their next event on Saturday. 

Green said replacing the plaster is on the list of things to update, and the Maryland Theatre's curtains aren't closing anytime soon. 

Instead they're insuring many encores with grand plans to expand and update the lighting, replace the HVAC system and a new seating project as they approach their 100th anniversary.

 

 

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