The Souris District Arts Council was incorporated 15 years ago. Their mission is to foster the development of art and cultural activities in the Souris District. In addition to hosting the Concert Series, they have been working with the Souris Avalon Theatre Board to improve the theatre as a more suitable venue for the performances they bring to the community.
This year, Souris District Arts Council successfully applied for a grant from the Manitoba government to purchase and install theatre curtains as a backdrop to the stage and to protect the screen. The total cost of this part of the project amounted to $16,260.00, with the government contributing $13,694.00.
In addition, in order to provide a more stable support for the tracking and rigging required for the new curtains, Souris District Arts Council hired Darren Janz to build a bulkhead, as well as the framework to surround the movie screen and curtains.
Recently, Darren removed the delicate theatre screen on the Sunday after the show, removed the old trough for the stage lights, built the bulkhead, and painted the proscenium and the new framing to match the curtains. Integrated Entertainment Technologies out of Winnipeg had received the contract for the curtains, and came to install them on Thursday. The theatre screen was put back in place and the framing completed, and by Friday evening, families with children of all ages could attend the showing of “Captain Marvel”. For those on the Arts Council, it had been truly a marvel to be involved in this process!
The theatre curtains were specially ordered from New Jersey, and the fabric is inherently fire-retardant which means that it is chemically treated to be slow burning or self-extinguishing when exposed to an open flame. These polyester velour curtains should last for many years, and they do not have to be re-treated every few years for this capability.
The monies used by the Arts Council to complete this project were from an account established in memory of three former Arts Council members, Ruth Brandon, Carol Ross-Harms, and Emily Turner. We know that they would be pleased to see some of their dreams come to reality!