Majestic Theatre at risk of downsizing, asks for community’s help

A+file+photo+of+the+Majestic+Theatre%2C+located+in+downtown+Corvallis%2C+Ore.%2C+from+July+2020.+The+Majestic+is+currently+at+risk+of+downsizing+and+is+asking+the+community+for+assistance.+

By Paul Gasper, OMN Archives

A file photo of the Majestic Theatre, located in downtown Corvallis, Ore., from July 2020. The Majestic is currently at risk of downsizing and is asking the community for assistance.

Sam Misa, News Contributor

The Majestic Theatre, located in downtown Corvallis, Ore., is asking community members for help after city staff rejected budget proposals. 

The Majestic Theatre is asking members of Corvallis to ask the city council to overturn what city staff have ruled. Without city council’s help, the theater will have to downsize the number of shows they can do in a year.

Majestic Theatre is an event venue located at 115 SW Second St. Featuring live productions, Majestic Theatre has been a part of Corvallis history for over a century, and is currently a branch of the city’s Parks and Recreation department.

Each year, Parks and Recreation Director Meredith Petit submits a proposed budget to the Corvallis city manager and the finance department. Part-time workers are working at least 20 hours a week. With the theatre’s spring musical, work hours are sometimes going over 40 hours a week, according to Petit.

The one full-time worker at the theater is Jimbo Ivy, Majestic Theatre supervisor for the City of Corvallis Parks and Recreation Department.

Jimbo often works between 50-60 hours per week during peak show periods,” Petit said. “There are more needs than there are resources available.” 

Other requests that the Parks and Recreation department proposed were for what are called ‘enhancement requests.’ These included additional part-time maintenance workers and funding to conduct a feasibility study on using synthetic turf for sports fields, in addition to other requests, according to Petit.

According to the Majestic Ambassadors— a group of volunteers— the current budget cuts proposed to the theater from the City General Fund will be to cut theater funding by half. The alternative proposals by Majestic Theatre included a proposal with a “tiny” impact to city budget, and another with no impact whatsoever, according to the ambassadors.

“If the City Council hears from all of us how critical the Majestic is for our health and happiness, and how much we love and depend on it, they will be able to act,” stated the Majestic Theatre press release.

To help Majestic Theatre, the ambassadors of Majestic are asking Corvallis residents to fill out their Google form which allows residents to inform the theater how they are able to help. This includes writing emails, making calls, signing up to testify in a public meeting or signing an open letter to the city council.