It’s lights out at the Carousel Theatre

Sandra ClarkOur Town Arts

The ancient Carousel Theatre on the UT campus is coming down. It’s amazing that it’s stood for 73 years.

It will be replaced by a $20 million facility of which the Boyd Family Foundation donated $5 million. The Carousel is the smaller, round theatre with no restrooms – not the larger Clarence Brown Theatre, which will remain.

Yet it was sad on January 23, 2024, when folks gathered for a “ghost light” ceremony.

Carol Mayo Jenkins and Dale Dickey were there. Dale performed as a child at the Carousel, and Carol has both performed there and taught in the theater department until her retirement.

Cynthia Moxley was there to capture fabulous photos and the emotions of the evening. A “ghost light” in the theater world is a single incandescent light that remains lit when the theater is unoccupied and would otherwise be completely dark, Moxley writes. It is usually placed center stage on a portable stand, and it keeps folks from stumbling around in the dark to reach stage lights, etc.

After short statements of farewell, the ghost light at the Carousel Theatre was extinguished for the final time. Read Cynthia’s complete story at The Blue Streak.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *