LOUISVILLE, Ky. — For 15 months, the curtains were drawn tight at The Kentucky Center, but starting in November, added safety measures and precautions mean Broadway is back.
"I think many of us take for granted the way life was before," PNC Broadway in Louisville President Leslie Broecker said. "Going to performances, going to concerts, coming to the theatre... and I don't think were ever going to take that for granted again."
Broecker said the facility has been through it in the last few years, with the fire in June of 2018 and the pandemic shutting things down for over a year.
"I've been working in this business for nearly 35 years and it's certainly the longest stretch not being in the theatre," Broecker said. "We've lost shows to floods and blizzards and tornadoes, but that's a couple of performances and you come right back."
The Kentucky Center's downtown location filled the streets with attendees before performances, drinking, dining and spending money downtown.
That lack of business permeated through the entire Broadway culture.
"This long drawn out has impacted our staff," Broecker said. "It's impacted downtown Louisville. So for me, to be back, it's just the way life is supposed to be. We're supposed to have culture and things that give us goosebumps, so that's what were going to do."
Even though there are a few months until the curtain rises on 'Waitress,' the feeling of excitement is already building for Broecker.
"Well, when we get that first audience in the house and I go make a curtain speech, I'm not sure there will be a dry eye," Broecker said. "I know mine won't be."