June 19, 2024

Depot Theater Announces New Artistic Director

It is with great pleasure that the Depot Theater’s Board of Directors announces a new 2019-2020 season under the artistic direction of Christopher King of Mullinville. King has volunteered to serve and will be the fourth person to lead the theater company established by Don Steele in 1984 as the Boot Hill Repertory Company at the Boot Hill Museum Complex. 

Born and raised in Kansas, King’s 35-year theater career includes directing theater programs in New York, Philadelphia, and Kansas City. In addition, he holds directing credits in more than 30 productions including Our Town, Sordid Lives, The Miracle Worker, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, and Fiddler on the Roof

“I am so honored to follow in the amazing footsteps and traditions of the Depot Theater Company,” said King. “Not only is this an exceptional theater, but the performing arts community, volunteer traditions and the quality of past productions have set a high bar. I look forward to meeting our partners, volunteers, actors and directors, production teams as well as getting to know the region better.” 

King recently moved to Mullinville where he is renovating a home. “When I saw that the Depot Theater needed volunteer help, I was more than glad to step up to help ensure the future of performing arts in my adopted region.” 

“It is with the utmost respect and appreciation for the tradition of providing high quality theater by actors, directors, technical, costuming and stage crews making up the Depot Theater Company that we announce this new era in theater in southwest Kansas,” said Katie Ruthi, President of the Depot Theater Board of Directors. “Countless hours of volunteer talent, effort and dedication have filled the Depot Theater and it is inspiring to have Christopher’s volunteer commitment as we build a sustainable future.” 

Barbara Straight, President of the Depot Theater Guild and member of the Board of Directors stated, “We invite all Company members to continue their involvement with and dedication to the Depot Theater as well as invite community members to join the effort. We’re looking forward to future performances.” 

Operations of the Depot Theater were temporarily paused on August 19, 2019, and since that time the board of directors has received an outpouring of support and ideas for future direction. In addition, the board has been conducting intense evaluation toward the goal of reorganizing and refocusing on its mission in order to develop a sustainability plan for the future. 

The mission of the Depot Theater is to provide space for theater and performance arts and education to enhance the quality of life for our diverse community. All sponsors, patrons and community partners will be contacted as we move forward with a revised season. 

With the support of the Mariah Fund, Kent Stehlik and Kathleen Holt have been working to establish a campaign Get on Board to revitalize and develop a fiscally sound plan for operations. While the event calendar remains in full swing, theater performances will resume before the end of the year with the spring season to be announced in the next few days. The Homestead Haunted House will be the next scheduled event. 

King’s website can be found at www.kingtheater.weebly.com . 

As the Board of Directors continues its revitalization and sustainability plan, all are invited to contribute positive ideas by visiting http://depottheaterco.com/ . The Board and constituents of the Depot Theater deeply appreciate your patience as well as your many messages of on-going support. 

For more information, contact Kathleen Holt at 620-338-1493 or Kent Stehlik at 620-255-0380.