Fargo-Moorhead Community Theatre Plans Return To Downtown Fargo Building
On December 13, 2019, beams in the roof of the theatre began to fail. A contractor and a structural engineer were brought in to examine the situation, at which time it was decided to cancel the final two performances of A Christmas Carol. The following day, the situation worsened and the building was deemed by the City of Fargo as dangerous, requiring staff to vacate the building immediately without time to remove valuable items from the theatre.
On Thursday, December 19, specialty contractor Jepsen Inc. of Minneapolis arrived to shore up the building. This stabilized the roof, which is how the theatre remains today. Two additional structural engineers examined the building after the first of the year and determined that the roof, structural beams and the catwalks need to be replaced. FMCT is currently waiting for the final report from the insurance company to determine next steps.
In a message to FMCT members, Executive Director Eloise Breikjern dispelled ongoing rumors that the theatre is to be rebuilt or relocated.
"Please understand that we are not tearing down the building nor are we moving to a different location," Breikjern said. "The building is standing and we will be replacing the roof, trusses, and rafters, along with the catwalks. Our plan is to make improvements to the theatre building that will benefit the production value and your experience at the theatre."
The organization has temporarily relocated its business office to FMCT's secondary location, Studio 6 Broadway, at 6 Broadway N, Fargo, ND. FMCT's educational programs will also be held at Studio 6 Broadway, while all remaining productions in the 2019-2020 season will go on as scheduled in new venues, to be announced at a later date.
The organization has had to leave behind several items during their quick evacuation and temporary relocation. Items that have not been retrieved from the theatre and which are considered immediate needs during this interim include cleaning supplies, a roll of ethernet cable and accessories, heavy work tables, counter tops, heavy duty shelving, and a washer and dryer.
In addition to donating office supplies, community members have several opportunities to support FMCT.
"A simple way that benefits both yourself and FMCT is to attend our performances, sign your child or grandchild up for theatre education classes," Breikjern said. "Please also remember FMCT this Giving Hearts Day on February 13th and consider a donation at that time.