Newberry Opera House

Newberry Opera House

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Newberry Opera House

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Description:
The Newberry Opera House, located in Newberry, South Carolina is located on I-26 about midway between Spartanburg and Columbia. In addition to popular artists, the theatre is the location for performances by the South Carolina Opera Company and the Asheville Lyric Opera.

History

It was designed in the French Gothic style as both a place of entertainment and as a seat of government for the city. The building, completed in 1881, had a tower high topped with a garfish weather vane, and the tower housed the town clock.

The original design called for the first floor to house the fire engine room, council chambers, a clerk’s office, a police officer, and three jail cells. The second floor was a hall with 426 seats, 53 by in size, and connected to a ticket office, a "green room", a cloakroom, and three dressing rooms. Drop curtains and seven scenes or sets for the stage were available. One scene, a landscape, survived to the late 20th century.

The Opera House quickly became known as "the entertainment center of the Midlands". On its stage appeared touring companies of New York plays, minstrel and variety shows, famed vocalists and lecturers, magicians and mind readers, novelty acts and boxing exhibitions. It was used not only by professional performers, but also by the community for meetings, dances, college commencement exercises, and musicals.

Silent films were shown at the Opera House in the early 1900s, followed by early EdisonTalkies" using a......
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