Lancaster had to wait a long time and pay a hefty price for its first legit theater--the 758-seat facility opened a year behind schedule and $2.5 million over budget--but early indications are that the first season at the Lancaster Performing Arts Center will be a hit.
Not only was the gala Nov. 22 opening performance sold out, its open-house celebration two days later was a mob scene. "We had people lining up at noon to see the building, even though we were not scheduled to open the doors until 4 p.m.," said Susan Davis, the city's cultural arts superintendent.
In all, 3,500 people attended opening day. They took a free tour of the $10-million arts center, which is the only theater for live events in the entire Antelope Valley.
Ticket sales for upcoming events at the theater are also going well. Three early-December performances of "The Nutcracker" by the Oakland Ballet were sold out the first day they went on sale. Also sold out was a Shirley Jones concert on Dec. 21.