FRANKLIN, Tenn. (WKRN) — Soon, you’ll be able to shop, eat and go to the theater at the Factory at Franklin. News 2 got a first-hand look at what the multimillion-dollar stage and auditorium will soon look like.
“Our own custom-built theater will be right here in this very spot in the new factory,” said Tony McAlister, board chair, Studio Tenn.
And work is already underway to transform this historic building into the cornerstone of the arts in Williamson County.
“We are going to have our own sound equipment and our own lighting equipment. I mean, it’s going to be remarkable,” said Patrick Cassidy.
Cassidy is the artistic director of Studio Tenn, Franklin’s professional theater company. He’s excited about the potential for not only the new theater but the entire experience at the Factory.
“That whole notion that I can go to a place – buy a dress, go to eat, and go see a show. I mean, that does not happen and we are so fortunate to have that,” said Cassidy.
For more than a decade, Studio Tenn has bounced around from venue to venue without a theater of its own. But with this space and a 10-year lease with a 10-year extension, that search is over.
“It’s absolutely a dream come true,” said McAlister.
TV host and Franklin resident Kathie Lee Gifford is a big supporter of Studio Tenn, and this new endeavor.
“We want it to be restored and reimagined in a really authentic Tennessean way. I think this little theater is going to do some great works,” said Gifford.
The curtain’s set to go up for the 2023-2024 season later this year, but the lineup is still under wraps until April. Also, the $3.5 million capital campaign to make all this possible is underway, and it’s appropriately called “Make.Believe.”