WUOMFM

Oldest opera house in Michigan turns 150

Jun 10, 2016

The state of Michigan’s oldest opera house, the Croswell Opera House in Adrian, is 150 years old.

Jere Righter, Artistic Director for the Croswell, joined Stateside to talk about the history and the future of the venue that has seen countless performers, speakers, plays and events over the last century and a half.

Righter says the venue was once used for animal shows, poultry sales, lectures and plays put on by the community. It was also a place for big, national shows and speakers to perform.

Ralph Waldo Emerson, Frederick Douglass and Elizabeth Cady Stanton have all stood on the opera house's stage, for example. Edwin Booth, brother of President Lincoln's assassin, too performed there.

"In fact they came here - the Booth family came here just a couple of years after the assassination, performing in the exact same play that Lincoln was watching when he was shot, so very interesting," Righter said.

Hear more about the Croswell in our full interview above.

Jere Righter, the Artistic Director of The Croswell Opera House