The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

60° Stony Brook, NY
The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

Newsletter

    Avram Theater Gets a Makeover

    Stony Brook Southampton’s Avram Theater, considered to be the biggest and best in Eastern Long Island, is currently under renovation and will not open until June 2008. The renovations began this summer after the culmination of the annual Sustainable Pleasure music series.

    The Theater, which currently houses 433 seats, has been host to a variety of artists since its beginning in the 1980s. The Avram Theater and the adjacent Avram Family Art Gallery were named after Dr. Morrell Avram and his wife, Mrs. Maria Avram in 1998 to recognize their generosity to SB Southampton.

    In a University press release, Stony Brook University President Shirley Strum Kenny said, “The Avram Theater has a rich legacy as a host for the world’s top performers and their audiences. It deserves a makeover, and it is getting one.” In 2006, when SB Southampton was acquired by SBU, Kenny had pledged a cultural revitalization of the campus.

    Specific renovations include, “New seats, new carpet, some lighting and sound equipment, perhaps some renovation to the stage itself,” said Linda Merians, Chief of Staff in the President’s Office. The press release also cited “backstage renovations and modifications to make the theater fully accessible.”

    The renovation was made possible by a multi-year gift at an undisclosed amount by Dr. and Mrs. Avram. Other fundraising efforts have also been instituted, which include “special events, such as the August 15 wine tasting before concert, to acquaint people during intermissions,” according to Merians. Merians further stated that Southampton and Manhattan residents have come forward upon cultivating fundraisers that were held in the past.

    In the press release, Kenny said, “We are so grateful for the Avram family’s continued commitment to this wonderful theater. The Avram Theater has long been associated with the arts and important cultural and educational events on the East End. With support from Mike and Maria and their family, it will once again become an unparalleled destination for outstanding performances, lectures, and discussions of issues that matter most to the people of Long Island, the nation, and the world.”

    The Theater will also be supported with a Theater Manager, Leonard Ziemkiewicz. Ziemkiewicz is “in charge of making sure space is equipped for each recital,” said Merians. “He has done everything from painting the stage to working the lights … and is very much a part of guiding the renovation.”

    Merians further said that people can go to Ziemkiewicz to book space. There is also an arts committee in place that is led by Dean of SB Southampton Martin Schoonen. Other members in the committee include Bob Reid, Alan Inkles from the Staller Center, Christine Gurke, Ziemkiewicz and Merians herself.

    As for the prospect of timely renovations, Merians said, “We will have the Sustainable Pleasures recital series again, and we will also rent the theater out to groups like Pianofest (we rented to this group this summer)” Pianofest is a series of concerts by internationally-acclaimed classical musicians.

    Leave a Comment
    Donate to The Statesman

    Your donation will support the student journalists of Stony Brook University. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

    More to Discover
    Donate to The Statesman

    Comments (0)

    All The Statesman Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *