Members of Le Petit Theatre du Vieux Carre's board of directors and Dickie Brennan & Co. discussed developments at the theater and forthcoming restaurant. The Brennan restaurant group purchased 60 percent of the building in December 2011 for $3 million (details here).
Le Petit vice chair Mike Mitchell addressed the theater's financial situation. The theater paid off its $700,000 mortgage, paid off all vendors and reimbursed ticket buyers from the cancelled season, he said. With the roughly $2 million remaining, the theater will create an endowment and begin work on its 2013 season (schedule after the jump.)
The Brennan group began heavy construction on its side of the building three weeks ago, Dickie Brennan said. The restaurant will be named Tableaux at Le Petit Theatre and is expected to open in late November or early December. The main floor will have a bar and 75 seats for dining. Additional dining space, including private dining rooms will be on the second and third floor. There also will be dining tables in the courtyard shared by the theater and restaurant. The restaurant will be open for lunch and dinner daily and brunch on Sunday.
Le Petit also is renovating its space. It will now use the hallway directly in front of the theater as a lobby, with a door opening onto St. Peter Street. New dressing rooms are being built in the backstage area on the Royal Street end of the building. The orchestra pit is being expanded so that it also can be used as a classroom space. Le Petit's developing operation plans call for more educational programming. Worley expects to have classroom programming during the day and to have the theater produce one Pulitzer Prize-winning play per season, which also will be performed for area high schools and will help draw new sources of funding.
The theater will open its season Jan. 19, 2013 with the Broadway show Lombardi. In March, it will stage Death of a Salesman, the first of the Pulitzer Prize winners. Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat follows in May, and the season concludes with Love, Loss, and What I Wore by Nora Ephron, who died yesterday. The theater also will be a venue for the Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival again.
Bryan Batt, a board member and longtime supporter of Le Petit, also mentioned using the theater for concerts and readings.