In the summer of 1991, Denver Wilson, then President of the Brandon, Mississippi Chamber of Commerce, got together with Brandon attorney, Bob Goddard, to discuss the need for a performing arts or theater group in the Brandon/Rankin County area. They … show more
In the summer of 1991, Denver Wilson, then President of the Brandon, Mississippi Chamber of Commerce, got together with Brandon attorney, Bob Goddard, to discuss the need for a performing arts or theater group in the Brandon/Rankin County area. They set a date and announced in the newspaper that there would be a meeting held and invited people interested in possibly forming a theater group to attend. The turnout was overwhelming! The group adopted the name The Black Rose Theater and began making plans for their first production. "The Night of January 16th" opened in the fall of 1991. The courtroom drama was presented, fittingly, at the Rankin County Courthouse, because the theater group did not have a space of their own in which to perform.
We began to search and it led us to Black Street in downtown Brandon where we found a vacant building, in less than ideal condition. The building had once been a movie theater, and a battery warehouse. The group liked the building, and was able to begin leasing it. Renovations had to be made before a play could be performed in the space. In the fall of 1992, The Black Rose Theater presented it's first production in it's new, permanent home; the musical "The Fantastiks".
Since that time, the theater has bought the building, and each year sets a season of five productions. The season runs from January through December. Each season includes a musical, a children's show, a couple of comedies, and a drama.
The theater is a non-profit organization, and survives solely on season membership sales, at the door sales, donations, and sponsorship of shows by area businesses.