New Frontier Theatre
2021 Season Outdoor Performing Space
We are performing all shows outside in 2021 in an outdoor performance area.
Synopsis of Project
Approaching the 75th season of the Black Hills Playhouse (BHP), we are planning to produce a summer season in a different way, but with a nod to the past. From 1947-1950, the BHP performed in a tent near Legion Lake called the Frontier Theatre. Forced by the hand of the current COVID-19 pandemic, the board and staff of the BHP are working to ensure the safety of artists and patrons in this challenging time by creating a new outdoor performing space to debut summer 2021. The New Frontier Theatre, a name born of pragmatism and nostalgia, represents meeting this challenge, but also an opportunity for future performing arts programs at the BHP.
SEATING PLAN STILL BEING FINALIZED
This plan is being carefully constructed to prioritize the safety of our artists and audiences and create seating areas that accommodate a wide variety of needs at our shows. Final design is still in process. We are in the process of constructing the seating chart in advance of reservations opening on April 27 and individual tickets going on sale May 11 to the general public.
As it stands today, our primary concern is making sure that our young company of artists (many who have not been vaccinated to date) will be able to stay healthy throughout the season. If our artists get sick, we won't have a season! Because of the need to maintain social distance in our living spaces, our company is very small, approximately 40 individuals, making it even more imperative that we do our best to keep everyone healthy. Another top concern are individuals who are most vulnerable i.e. children of artists on the campus and people with health issues that prevent them from getting vaccinations.
The seating plan is being designed to accommodate those who want to be socially distanced and masked, and will have a mask-optional seating section. The seating chart will be on the website shortly before reservations open, so please stay tuned!
Led by Associate Director Randy Niles, the BHP Physical Plant Committee, and a team of passionate BHP alums and volunteers, a plan has come together to bring this theater to life just in time for the 2021 Season.
BHP Physical Plant Committee BHP Alum NFT Crew
Rick Giesel, Chair Randy Niles, Chris Jones, CDJ Creative Services
Gary Merkel Dan Workman, Black Hills Playhouse, Augustana College
Don Massa Jonathon Allender-Zivic, University of South Dakota
Monni Karim Victor Shonk, University of South Dakota
Ron Jeffries John Utter, Technical Director, Black Hills Playhouse
Charolyn Mize Chris Haug, Amber Marisa Cook, SE Missouri State University
Randy Niles (staff liaison) Scott Mollman, University of South Dakota
*special thanks to Gene Fennell
who helped with preliminary design ideas
We are eternally grateful to NFT Donors & Funders