Ford's Theatre in DC to reopen with private funds

WASHINGTON (AP) - Ford's Theatre will reopen its doors and resume performances Wednesday, using private funding, even though the government shutdown has continued into a third week.

Theater officials announced Tuesday that the national historic site and performance space will reopen Wednesday. Theater trustee Ronald O. Perelman, the chairman and CEO of MacAndrews and Forbes Holdings Inc., donated $25,000 in emergency funding to pay for the theater's operations for the next eight days.

Ford's Theatre, where President Abraham Lincoln was assassinated, is a National Park Service site. A private group runs the theater's programming.

On Wednesday, the theater will resume performances of "The Laramie Project," which is part of the theater's Lincoln Legacy Project focusing on diversity and equality. The production marks 15 years since Matthew Shepard, a gay college student, was abducted and killed in Laramie, Wyo. Remaining tickets are $25 each.

The Ford's Theatre Society has been losing about $100,000 in revenue per week since the theater went dark at the start of the highly anticipated "Laramie Project" production due to the government shutdown, said spokeswoman Lauren Beyea. The show will run through Oct. 27, but will not be extended because the actors have other commitments.

An agreement was made to reopen Ford's Theatre after several states agreed to provide funding to reopen national parks in other areas. The National Park Service agreed to a similar arrangement for the theater.


(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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