Categorized | Entertainment

Governor releases $1.5M for Kahilu Theatre


Gov. Neil Abercrombie has announced the release of $1.5 million in capital improvement grant funds for the Kahilu Theatre Foundation.

Identified by the state Legislature, these funds will finance design and construction costs for improvements at the 33-year-old Kahilu Theatre in Waimea.

“The Kahilu Theatre has not had significant upgrades or repairs since it was built in 1981,” Abercrombie said. “This grant will fully fund much-needed improvements at the facility, reducing its operating costs in the future and strengthening the financial sustainability of this artistic and educational venue for many Big Island communities.”

This project will repair or replace the 20,000-square-foot building’s roof, stage and auditorium curtains and scrim, auditorium seats, steps leading to the stage, and stairways and hand railings leading to the front entrance. In addition, the electrical system, sound system and Kohala-side restrooms will be upgraded at the 490-seat theatre. A new emergency generator will also be installed.

“These improvements would not be possible without the committed support of our community, who wrote over 200 letters to the Legislature, and the determination of Sen. Malama Solomon,” said Tim Bostock, managing and artistic director of KTF.

“Kahilu belongs to the people of Waimea. With this grant, we can look after the theatre for present and future generations. We look forward to presenting an exciting 2014-2015 season under a roof with no leaks,” he said.

Local contractors will be used for these projects and the majority of construction is planned for this summer.

Jess Turnbull of Construction Dynamics has been hired as project manager, and Rhoady Lee Architecture and Design is lead architect.

Incorporated in 1980 as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, KTF is responsible for the management and operations of Kahilu Theatre. The mission of KTF is making a place where community, creativity and inspiration thrive.

The facility presents a wide array of performances and events, including music, dance, drama, film and visual arts. The theatre will present a full 2014-2015 season, launching this July, which includes free public events.

Various arts education programs for youth at KTF impact more than 8,000 students each year.

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