Meadville Tribune

October 15, 2013

Academy Theatre adds digital projector to provide new experience for theatergoers

By Lisa Byers
Meadville Tribune

MEADVILLE — The Academy Theatre has added a new piece of equipment that will give theatergoers a new experience when they visit the theater as soon as next season.

The theater recently purchased a digital projector from the Fredonia Opera House. The Fredonia Opera House had purchased the projector not long ago but had to upgrade to a projector with the ability to stream live content so it could show the Live at the Met Series this past summer.

Cynthia Bivens, Academy Theatre’s managing director, said the Fredonia Opera House originally offered the Academy the projector last year, but the theater at the time struggled to find a purpose for it.

“The offer was on the table for a while,” Bivens said. “We started brainstorming for some uses for it and found a few educational uses, and in terms of performance art, it could bring an extra dimension.”

Bivens stressed that even with the theater’s new capabilities, the theater will not transition back to a movie house.

“We’re looking forward to using it for education, art house films and as an extra layer of special effects for shows,” she said. “It has a trifold of uses that we are excited to try out.”

There are no plans to use the projector any more this season. In fact, the Academy staff is still working to move the projector to its permanent resting spot. But Bivens said she is looking forward to seeing how Sarah Wolford, the theater’s new artistic director, will incorporate the projector into next year’s schedule.

“She’ll be designing the 2014-15 season,” Bivens said. “I’m hoping she’ll get a chance to try it out.”