Gummersbach stage building
The Gummersbach stage was opened in 1974 as a theater for the Oberbergischer Kreis and the auditorium of what is now the Städtische Lindengymnasium in downtown Gummersbach . At the end of the 1970s the building was named Theater der Stadt Gummersbach .
The stage house is located in downtown Gummersbach in the immediate vicinity of the town hall, the district and city library Gummersbach, the district building of the Oberbergischer Kreis, the public sports facilities and the municipal linden school on Reininghauser Strasse.
Architecture and equipment
The building is a theater built from 1971 to 1974 by the Marienheider architect Hans Brandt (students of Hans Poelzig : including Theodor Heuss Academy Gummersbach 1965, “Backfischaquarium” girls high school Siegburg 1954, today high school Siegburg Alleestraße ) in the style of brutalism . The stage technology was set up by Heinrich Ritter, the technical director of the Bonn theater. The hall has 800 seats, and every second row of seats can be folded down to form tables for use as an auditorium. Spatial and technical possibilities for simultaneous translation of lectures were also provided. The visitor entrances are on two levels, the lower one being barrier-free. There is an approach roundabout in front of the upper main entrance and there is a sufficient number of parking spaces in the immediate vicinity of the stage building. The spacious foyer on two levels with cloakrooms has a cafeteria on the upper floor and a bar and bar in the basement. The interior of the 1970s is true to style and has been completely preserved to this day, also because the building was never structurally remodeled. The iron curtain made of stainless steel with its engravings, which was modern at the time and which corresponds to the entrance doors of the main portal made of the same material and engravings, is an eye-catching stylistic feature . There are several conveniently arranged side entrances as well as an approach ramp directly at the stage area.
Dimensions and extract technical data:
“Stage room width 19 m, depth 15.25 m. Cord floor height 18 m, portal width 9 to 11 m, portal height up to 6.40 m, right side platform 8.75 × 12.05 m, height 7.50 m, 33 manual counter hoists each 200 kg + 1 curtain hoist, panel floor 2 × 63 A, 2nd floor × 32 A, 2 × 16 A, connections up to 180 A can also be connected outside the stage. Lighting: 2 lighting trains, portal and Z-bridge with spotlights, projection equipment (Pani), control room with 90 circles, ADB Mentor system + ADB S 11 emergency desk, alternating current, operating voltage 230 volts. Sound system: System D & B, 2 power amplifiers each 600 watts + 2 amplifiers each 480 watts, mixer Allen & Heath GL "
Technically, the house was repeatedly adapted to current requirements without affecting the original furnishings.
In September 1969, based on an investigation by the market research company Hilpert to improve the attractiveness of the Oberbergischer Kreis for immigrants, the starting shot was given by a council resolution for the construction of the Gummersbach stage house as a theater and auditorium building in the newly constructed town. Grammar school Grotenbach Gummersbach (today Städt. Lindengymnasium Gummersbach). “The district town should get a complete theater. with a capacity of 800 seats and the latest stage technology. A house in which most of the productions of the Bonn Theater, with which Gummersbach had a close relationship, could be performed. ”For the realization, the citizens of Gummersbach collected a good DM 300,000 in private donations through various campaigns, with the goal they set themselves of 750,000 DM was clearly missed. The Oberbergische Kreis contributed 500,000 DM - the main burden of the construction costs, however, which ultimately amounted to around 8.5 million DM, was borne by the city of Gummersbach. Originally an investment sum of 3.3 million DM was assumed.
“On October 26, 1974, the doors of the 'Bühnenhaus Gummersbach' officially opened. In view of the many difficulties, many people may have rubbed their eyes in disbelief as to whether it actually came true what the Council decision of 1969 had initiated. But with the opening and the overwhelming impression that the house made on the guests, all painful contractions seemed to be forgotten. The city of Gummersbach celebrated its theater! ”From the beginning, a permanent ensemble was not planned for the stage house, but rather an operation as a play theater, which began on October 27, 1974 with the performance of the Mozart opera“ Don Giovanni ”by the ensemble of the Bonn Opera , the orchestra of the Bonn Beethovenhalle under the musical direction of Ralf Weikert .
In the heyday that followed, the stage building excelled through numerous and extremely popular in-house productions under the direction of the cultural representative of the city of Gummersbach, Gus Anton. “When the house celebrated its tenth anniversary in October 1984, the cultural office counted 5,500 subscribers with twelve rights. ARD and ZDF reported several times on the cultural activities in Gummersbach, especially against the background of the egg productions. The commitment in the district town was considered exemplary for a medium-sized town. ”In 1989, the stage building set a record with 70,000 visitors.
For the 25th anniversary in 1999, however, the range of programs had been significantly reduced in previous years due to cost-saving measures and the number of subscribers fell accordingly. Various civic efforts to cushion the financial cuts in the cultural sector had only limited success.
On April 30, 2013, the city council decided to close the building in 2018 in order to add a school extension to the adjoining grammar school, and to demolish it in 2019 if it were not possible to increase the number of subscribers and permanently limit the need for subsidies or to make viable proposals for sustainable operation to get citizenship. The number of subscribers was 950 in 2013.
In 2017 it became clear that a school extension is not necessary and will not be pursued further by the Gummersbach urban planning. The demolition of the stage house planned for 2019 was therefore also omitted. Nevertheless, the closure of the stage building in 2018 was continued, although the conditions of the Council decision of 2013 were met. A signature campaign initiated by the Musical-Project Oberberg eV under openpetition.de for the preservation of the theater attracted around 6,500 participants. In April 2018, a support association was founded for the maintenance, care and operation of the Gummersbach stage. On May 29, 2018, the council of the city of Gummersbach unanimously decided on the proposal of the mayor to close the stage and to apply for regional funding for a complete renovation from the state of North Rhine-Westphalia.
The stage house is the only theater building in the city of Gummersbach and, as a fully-fledged three-part house, offered various types of events every year until it was temporarily closed on June 11, 2018 for reasons that have not been publicly proven by the city administration. The events include classical concerts, musicals, plays, boulevard theater, cabaret and ballet, as well as children's theater.
- German Stage Yearbook - 2009/2010 season, p. 231
- City of Gummersbach (ed.): 40 Years Theater Gummersbach - A Documentation, 2014, p. 15
- Ibid., P. 21
- Ibid., P. 23 f
- Ibid., P. 38
- Oberbergische Volkszeitung of April 8, 2013, p. 29
- Oberbergische Volkszeitung, May 1, 2013, p. 29
- Oberbergische Volkszeitung of February 15, 2014, p. 41