A Virtual Tour of On Broadway Theater Coos Bay, Oregon USA
(1979 - 2006)
On Broadway Theater had withstood the test of time for a total of 27 years. The On Broadway Thespians was there for 12 of those sweet long years (1994-2006). Join us as we take a virtual tour of our old stomping grounds.
We begin outside the Theater looking in, with a visual history of our storefront & marquee throughout the years as we (On Broadway Thespians) remembered it:
Flashback to a sign that once graced the lobby during the reign of The Dolphin Players back during the 1980's.
As you stepped in through the front door to the lobby, you were instantly greeted by thick blocks of security glass, which once served as the original ticket booth.
The main Lobby, with its comfortable bench seating lined the entire north wall. Posters from past shows framed one wall while another special show billing of actors currently playing lied directly opposite the other.
Various theatre decorations adorned the lobby, like this old favorite standby, and of course our other wildly popular wire wall art.
Actress, Director, Board Member, Founder, and all around Pillar of On Broadway Theater, Tosca Means. This treasured tribute hung in our lobby as a reminder of her dedication to OBT and the Arts. Be sure and visit the Memorials page as well as our Gallery sections to learn more about this remarkable woman.
Another OBT icon, George Markel, who likewise contributed much to theatre in this area, also found a special spot in our lobby honoring him. To learn more about this incredibly talented Actor and Director, visit the Memorials section of our website.
Another popular hangout was always the Concessions stand in the lobby, with the solid door leading to the main Office. The plate glass Door next to the table and flower vase, lead patrons from the main Lobby to the Auditorium and Stage.
Entering the Auditorium, just off to the right against a short wall, sat a vintage player Piano, with quite a story to tell. The original owner was a man from Europe who had brought the piano with him when he sailed to America by way around the tip of Cape Horn. It stayed in his family for years, until his daughter bequeathed it to Tosca Means.
On the wall just to the left of where the Piano sat, was a beautiful mural painted by reknown artist Mitch Geisert depicting a Director and his merry band of actors. Behind this mural were the public restrooms.
At the foot of the mural were two sets of stairs; the short staircase on the right leading directly to seating, and the longer staircase on your left that lead up to the Light & Sound Booth, from which spotlights often poked out of cubby holes.
Another angle looking at the Lighting & Sound Booth, from atop the stage. (Note the track lighting and spotlight cubby holes). The Auditorium was unique from other local stages because in contrast it was small and intimate, 83-seats to be exact, all set on risers. Wheel-chair access was just off the main stage.
The stage itself was small & rectangular, with props and sets constantly varying the look and feel. Stage sets ranged from simple one prop bare-stage projects to elaborate multi-room house constructions, from castles and forests to circuses and diners. Here is but a small sampling of past sets:
Chairs from play, "Voices."
Outdoors set for play, "Snow White."
Castle affair from play, "Many Moons."
Circus Tent from play, "JB."
Diner from play, "Bus Stop."
House set from play, "Crimes of the Heart."
House set from play, "Night, Mother."
House set from play, "Sunsets."
Farm House set from play, "Papa Is All."
Periodic House set from play, "The Octette Bridge Club."
Parlor set from play, Mousetrap."
Scrim from play, "The Alley Kids II."
The Green Room, held the actor's dressing rooms just off to the left of the stage on the 1st floor.
Staircase in the Green Room, leading to the Prop Storage Room situated just above the Green Room. You'd be surprised how much storage that little sweet spot afforded.
The Rehearsal space, was another upstairs space, tucked back behind the Light Booth. The floor to it sat overtop the main lobby plus part of a neighboring shop. It was a rather large room viewed from the street. In a pinch, it doubled as a makeup/special effects room separate from the Dressing room downstairs.
Towards the end we used it to hold our "Costume & Wardrobe Sale," in an effort to pare down belongings that otherwise had to go into storage for the big move.
Secret Garden was the last play staged at the On Broadway Theater building, marking the last time the sign board officially graced the sidewalk. The fact that it was a Children's theater ensemble made it all the more appropriate because that was something dear to founder Tosca Mean's heart.
On November 4, 2006 we held a Farewell OBT Party for the local community to come pay their last respects to a very special building, in which many had their start there as kids in Children's Theatre. The official invitation read...
"OBT: Enriching the lives of patrons and players of all ages,
through the magic of live theatre."
(This page last updated December 8, 2006)
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