Burbank's Colony Theatre faces potential eviction, uncertain future

The Colony Theatre has called Burbank home since 2000, but now, the theater faces an uncertain future as one city department is recommending the theater company be evicted from the space.

"These are our livelihoods," said artistic director Heather Provost. "We are artists. We want to bring art and good things to this universe."

Provost said their lease comes from the City of Burbank's Park and Recreation Department. Now, the department is recommending the city evict the Colony Theatre Company, and hand the space over to the YMCA to create another type of theatre. 

"We were told that they were looking for an entity to operate as a culture regional arts center, which is what we have been," Provost said.

Actor and producer Barry Pearl called the Colony "a tremendous space with a tremendous history."

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Pearl played Doody in the 1978 film "Grease," but he also produces plays, and he became concerned when he found out the situation the Colony was suddenly faced with.

"It breaks my heart to see a theater like this," he said. "It started out as a theater company and then went union, which meant it provided an actual living wage for actors."

Pearl said that if the Colony is evicted, all that will be lost. 

Actress Kathy Dietch, who's performed on Broadway and in Los Angeles called the news "devastating. This is a vital space. This is one of the first spaces I came to when I moved here a few years ago."

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Next Wednesday, Oct. 4, Provost and the company of the Colony Theatre will be at the Burbank City Council, to try and convince the council members to revert course.

In a statement to FOX 11, Burbank's Communications Director Jonathan Jones said "We will not be providing any comments or statements concerning the Request for Proposals (RFP) for the Burbank Center Stage, as it is an active an ongoing process. We value transparency and engagement with our community. Therefore, we encourage all interested parties to tune into the special City Council meeting next Wednesday at 5 p.m., where the Council will be interviewing the three applicants for the RFP."