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Sponsorships

Thank you to the following companies for sponsoring the "BCT Presents" 2013-2014 season:Bloomingfoods, Blue Ace Media, Indiana Arts Commission, Ivy Tech Community College, Midwest Color Printing, Nick's English Hut, One World Enterprises, and Trojan Horse.

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Events

The Buskirk-Chumley Theater Presents

The Buskirk-Chumley Theater Presents lines up yet another amazing group of artists for the 2013-2014 season!

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Box Office

BCT Box Office

Get your tickets to all your favorite events in Bloomington right here!

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Support the Buskirk-Chumley Theater

Only with your generous support we can bring continuous quality to the Buskirk-Chumley Theater's stage. Make your donation to the Theater online today!

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History

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Listed in the National Register of Historic Places, the Indiana Theater - or simply "the Indiana," as it is known to Bloomington residents - was built in 1922 as a silent movie house by Harry and Nova Vonderschmitt. In its early years, the theater had a pipe organ for movie accompaniment and bands played on the bandstand. It is said that Hoagy Carmichael led "The Collegians" here from 1925 to 1928.

In 1933 the Indiana was severely damaged by a fire that gutted much of the building. An investigation into the cause of the blaze was inconclusive, however the Vonderschmitt family remained undaunted and rebuilt the theater the following year.

The Fire :: The Theater During the Fire A Mule with a sandwich board as a marketing tool :: Marketing Techniques were Lo-Fi, yet hilarious and effective A night on the  Town :: IN the 1940s the Theater could  still easily fit over 1000  patrons

Hoagy Carmichael :: In the 1920's Hoagy Carmichael led a band named the Collegians The BCT at Night :: The Theater on a busy night nowadays. Photo by Michael LaFleur, 2010 Nowadays at the Theater :: With close to 200 events  annualy the Theater is easily one of the busiest community theaters in  the country. With acts ranging from Christmas with the POPS to Indie  Rock and HipHop, from Pulp Fiction to Breaking Away, the theater's all  ages programming brings something for everyone. Photo by Levi Thomas, 2009

Reconstruction created a new look for the theater, both inside and out, including the addition of the "dogbone" marquee that remains a Bloomington landmark to this day. Movies soon dominated the activity at the theater, and the Indiana continued to be a popular and memorable destination for decades to come.

In 1975, the Vonderschmitt family sold the theater to Kerasotes Theatres, Inc. Kerasotes altered the interior, blocking off the original balcony to add an upstairs screen, and operated the theater until 1995.

The auditorium from the stage

In December of 1995, Kerasotes donated the theater to the Bloomington Area Arts Council (BAAC) for use as a performing arts center. Garnering support from the entire community, the BAAC received donations from many prominent citizens, and the Indiana was renamed the Buskirk-Chumley Theater in honor of the local family's generosity to the project.

Beautifully restored and outfitted with state-of-the-art technical equipment, the theater is currently managed by BCT Management, Inc., a private non-profit organization with a volunteer Board of Directors.

The Buskirk-Chumley has become the primary venue for the Lotus World Music Festival, Indiana University's African American Arts Institute, Cardinal Stage Company, and Jazz from Bloomington. National acts such as Andrew Bird, Regina Spektor, Arlo Guthrie, Indigo Girls, Umphrey's McGee, Kimya Dawson and John Mellencamp have graced the stage.

The Theater hosts 200 events a year, organized by more than 50 organizations making it one of the busiest community theaters in the country.

 

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