Speaking of real estate news (see “SCADs” below) …
Late last year — after 16 years of wandering around to different performance spaces in Fort Worth — Stage West came back to its long-time home at 821 W. Vickery. The company left the old warehouse because the reconstruction of I-30 had made it perilous for theatergoers to get there. But the I-30 re-routing is done, large portions of downtown Fort Worth are racing to redevelop — so Stage West raised a quarter of a million dollars to renovate the space and moved in with a revival of Alan Ayckbourn’s Season’s Greetings. It’s hard for an arts organization to build a stable audience without a permanent home, so it was little short of miraculous that Stage West managed to survive — let alone that it returned in such comfy shape.
It was just a brief announcement in the business section of the Fort Worth Star Telegram yesterday, but Stage West has now passed another milestone: They’ve bought the building.
Actually, Stage West board members formed a limited partnership with another tenant, and together, they’ve bought the warehouse and the building next door, currently housing a construction company. This way, the Stage West staff gets to avoid the leaky-roof-and-city-taxes headaches of being the actual owner — problems that dogged the company in the ’90s when it found a home in the old TCU movie theater on University Drive. After 10 years, those problems led the theater to sell the building and continue the hejira that has led them, full circle, back to West Vickery.
The irony is that Stage West’s current show is an extended run of Noises Off . Michael Frayn’s farce, as you no doubt remember, concerns a dysfunctional theater troupe that falls apart at the seams during the run of a stage farce.