This post has been updated.
State officials and leaders with Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts gathered on the front steps of the performing arts center Thursday afternoon to announce that the arts and culture venue will reopen Sept. 1.
“Now we can announce, the show will go on,” said Kim Baker, president of the Kentucky Center.
The announcement comes more than a month after a roof fire damaged the building at 501 W. Main St. Officials were forced to cancel the PNC Broadway Series show “Waitress,” move productions to other venues and reschedule other events.
William Landrum, secretary of the Kentucky Finance and Administration Cabinet, said during a press conference that the center’s staff were back in their offices, the elevators are functioning and Whitney Hall is ready for performances.
Construction is still underway on the main restrooms and in the lobby. Workers were stripping plaster off the ceiling of the lobby Thursday, working 10-hour shifts to get repair work done quickly, he said.
“The work I have just mentioned has been aggressive, and the results great,” Landrum said, noting that when the Kentucky Center reopens, the lobby will still be a construction zone. “It will be functional, and it will be safe.”
State officials said in June that the majority of the damage from the fire was water-related, a result of the sprinkler system going off and firefighters’ efforts to quell the blaze. The lobby sustained the most damage, but water also was found in dressing rooms, mechanical rooms, the basement, offices, restrooms, HVAC systems and ductwork lines, according to prior reporting.
The fire started inside the center’s barrel roof, though state and Kentucky Center officials have remained quiet about the possible cause as an investigation is still underway. Renovations were going on at the Kentucky Center at the time, but it is unclear what, if any role, that might have played.
Landrum told Insider Thursday that insurance adjusters were still working to calculate the total cost of the damage.