Completion of Bergfeld Park Amphitheater to be celebrated with song and dance

Published on Saturday, 17 June 2017 01:20 - Written by FAITH HARPER, fharper@tylerpaper.com

The city of Tyler expects the Bergfeld Park Amphitheater project will be complete by its grand opening celebration on Thursday - but it will be tight.

As of Thursday, the area was still an active construction site.

The seats were to be installed Friday, and the brick column facade on the amphitheater is scheduled to be finished up Monday, said Councilman Don Warren, who has been working closely on the project.

Monday also will be a big day for landscaping. Topsoil and sand are scheduled to come in, and the city has turf and real grass on site to install.

“I think we are looking good,” Warren said. “The only thing that may not be finished (before the opening festivities) is a little bit of landscaping.”

After half a year of construction, the amphitheater construction is complete.

An opening celebration is set for 6:30 to 8 p.m. Thursday.

That celebration will include entertainment from the Tyler Civic Theatre.

The organization will perform sing-a-long songs and scenes from the theatre’s three summer musicals: “Rock of Ages,” “Peter Pan Jr. the Musical” and “Legally Blonde the Musical.”

There also will be three food trucks at the event, Warren said.

Attendees are encouraged to bring blankets to lay on the grass, as well as folding chairs.

“We think it’s a great opportunity to collaborate. The city wants to show how the stage could be used, and it’s a great opportunity to do so and showcase our talent and preview the three musicals that are available on our stage this summer, while they finish the technical equipment at Bergfeld,” said DeAnna Hargrove, managing director of the theater.

Guitar Center will provide lights and sounds for Thursday’s production.

The show will begin with a few musical selections from “Rock of Ages,” which will open at 8 p.m. Thursday at Liberty Hall. The show has adult themes, but the musical sections performed at Bergfeld will be family-friendly.

Next up will be a snippet from “Peter Pan Jr. the Musical.”

“We do have theater for children,” Ms. Hargrove said. “We have 16 summer camps, and all but three of them are full with waiting lists. That’s what we do in the summertime, but we do have a year-round acting conservatory. We also have shows for children all year-round.”

The lion’s share of the performance will be from “Legally Blonde the Musical.”

“The music is pretty great, and it’s received rave reviews on Broadway,” Ms. Hargrove said. “We are excited about it.”

 

HISTORY

In 2016, Tyler accepted a $325,000 donation from Centene Charitable Foundation for the renovation of the historic Bergfeld Amphitheater.

The amphitheater was originally built in 1936, and was a gift to Tyler residents by the Sears-Roebuck & Co., after the Tyler Sears was the only store to turn a profit during the Great Depression.

Centene’s donation, along with an additional $100,000 in private donations, $162,000 from the Parks and Recreation budget and $400,000 from Half-Cent Sales Tax fund was used to update the amphitheater for modern-day usage, according to the city.

Updates include new sound and light features, correcting drainage issues, shading seats and creating a grassy area for families to sit together.

The amphitheater will maintain its local and state historic designations because the Public Works Administration-era rock wall around it was kept.

Twitter: @TMTFaith

 

TYLER CIVIC THEATRE’S SUMMER MUSICAL SCHEDULE

“Rock of Ages”

Location: Liberty Hall, 103 E. Erwin St.

Dates: June 22-24 at 8 p.m., June 25 at 2:30 p.m.

Price: $25 per ticket

Tickets: http://tylercivictheatre.com/shows

 

“Peter Pan Jr., the Musical”

Location: Tyler Civic Theatre, 400 Rose Park Drive

Dates: June 30-July 1 at 7:30 p.m., July 2 at 2:30 p.m.

Price: $12.50 per ticket

Tickets: http://tylercivictheatre.com/shows

 

“Legally Blonde, the Musical”

Location: Tyler Civic Theatre, 400 Rose Park Drive

Dates: July 20-22 at 7:30 p.m., July 23 at 2:30 p.m.

July 27-29 at 7:30 p.m., July 30 at 2:30 p.m.

Aug. 3-5 at 7:30 p.m., Aug. 6 at 2:30 p.m.

Price: $20 per ticket for the July weekends, $25 per ticket for the August weekend.

Tickets: http://tylercivictheatre.com/shows