The Franklin Theatre Premieres ‘Elvis’ to Packed House
On June 22nd, 2022, The Franklin Theatre hosted the Middle Tennessee premiere of Baz Luhrmann’s “Elvis” to a full house of local celebrities, actors, musicians, and theatre donors. The Warner Bros. Pictures film, which premiered on June 24th, explores the relationship between Elvis (played by Austin Butler) and his enigmatic manager, Colonel Tom Parker (played by Tom Hanks).
Among those in attendance were Nashville-based music producer and composer Shannon Sanders, The McCrary Sisters, and two of Elvis’ former bandmates, Tony Brown and Larry Strickland. Sanders moderated a short panel with Brown and Strickland who shared memories and insights from their time working with Elvis.
Sanders, who plays a pentecostal pastor in the film, surprised the crowd with a video call from director “Baz Luhrmann.” Luhrmann thanked everyone for their attendance and support and signed off by leading a chant of “it’s time to take care of business!”
This event served as both a film premiere and a fundraiser for the non-profit The Franklin Theatre. Events like this help us further our mission of providing world-class performing arts experiences to diverse Williamson County residents and visitors. We’d like to thank our staff for their hard work in producing this high-quality event, our advisory board for their continued leadership and oversight, our 1937 Society members, our Franklin Theatre donors, and all who attended on Wednesday. Special thanks to our in-kind event partners Cromwell Media, 102.1 The Ville, Menu Maker Catering, Leiper’s Fork Distillery, Curio Brewing Company, and Bite Club Baked Goods.
The Franklin Theatre ‘Elvis’ Premiere Press Coverage:
The Franklin Theatre Launches Phased Reopening for 2021
Beginning with small, private rental events, theater now looking to bring back live entertainment, movies and hybrid live-streamed shows that conform to current COVID restrictions
FRANKLIN, TN (March 10, 2020) – After going dark to public performances last year due to COVID-19 restrictions, the Heritage Foundation of Williamson County, TN, parent organization of The Franklin Theatre, is excited to announce the theater’s phased reopening plan for 2021.
Currently the theater is open for private rentals, including Monday nights through April where another local non-profit, Studio Tenn, is hosting its popular virtual talk show: Studio Tenn Talks: Conversations with Patrick Cassidy. In addition, as part of its mission to be a platform for local philanthropy, The Franklin Theatre is currently working in partnership with local video production companies and The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee (CFMT) to provide an opportunity for non-profits to film affordable promotional videos to support their participation in The Big Payback, CFMT’s annual 24-hour giving event that kicks off on Wednesday, May 5 at 6 p.m.
The current reopening plan, which will be modified as needed based on any future COVID-related restrictions, will bring back limited-capacity weekend movies, limited-capacity plus livestream performances through June. Until the state guidelines indicate otherwise, the theater’s capacity is approximately 75 guests, which accounts for adequate social distancing.
Beginning in July, the theater will begin presenting movies and live performances with increasing regularity and possible increased capacity. The Franklin Theatre will continue to follow the governor’s Tennessee Pledge and CDC guidelines and update reopening plans as needed.
The theater’s box office will reopen with limited hours beginning on Friday, March 12, in time for Sandi Patty’s ticket on-sale date. The box office’s limited hours will run through April and will be 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. on Friday, Saturdays and Sundays. In addition to new shows going on sale over the next several weeks, many 2021-2022 shows are currently on sale.
- Sandi Patty (Limited Capacity & Livestream) – Saturday, May 8 | 3 p.m. & 7 p.m.
- Deborah Allen (Limited Capacity & Livestream) – Saturday, June 5 | 2 p.m. & 8 p.m. – ON SALE FRIDAY, APRIL 2
- The Isaacs – Friday, July 9 | 8 p.m. – CURRENTLY ON SALE
- James Gregory – Saturday, July 10 | 8 p.m. – ON SALE FRIDAY, APRIL 2
- Jeff Allen – Thursday, July 15 | 8 p.m. – CURRENTLY ON SALE
- Larry Carlton – Saturday, July 17 | 8 p.m. – ON SALE FRIDAY, APRIL 9
- Farewell Angelina – Thursday, July 29 | 8 p.m. – CURRENTLY ON SALE
- John Ford Coley, Billy Dean & Tom Wurth – Backgrounds and Bridges Acoustic Tour – Thursday, August 5 | 8 p.m. – CURRENTLY ON SALE
- Allie Colleen – Friday, August 6 | 8 p.m. – CURRENTLY ON SALE
- Henry Cho – Saturday, August 14 | 4 p.m. & 8 p.m. – CURRENTLY ON SALE
- Gary Puckett & The Union Gap – Thursday, August 19 & Friday, August 20 | 8 p.m. – ON SALE FRIDAY, APRIL 16
- David Wilcox – Saturday, August 21 | 8 p.m. – CURRENTLY ON SALE
- BJ Thomas – Friday, August 27 & Saturday, August 28 | 8 p.m. – CURRENTLY ON SALE
“We are emerging from an incredibly challenging season for The Franklin Theatre,” said Heritage Foundation COO Meg Hershey. “While we had to temporarily close the doors to public events, we are diligently working behind the scenes to reschedule some of the amazing programming that was planned for last year. We couldn’t be more excited about getting this cherished venue back open to continue its mission, bringing inspiring arts and entertainment experiences to our community.”
Hershey went on to say that surviving an unprecedented season which left the theater with very few options for programming has been nothing short of challenging.
“This theater has been sustained by the community’s embrace of underwritten marquee messages, limited small group private rental events and through the commitment of corporate sponsors and donors of the nonprofit Heritage Foundation and its division The Franklin Theatre,” she said.
The Heritage Foundation is also making plans for a 10th anniversary celebration later this year to commemorate 10 years since the theater’s restoration and grand re-opening.
Gateway Chamber Orchestra: America’s Haydn Festival Comes to Franklin
The Gateway Chamber Orchestra’s 10th anniversary season – “Inspiration Abounds.”
The Gateway Chamber Orchestra of Tennessee embarks on a new annual music festival that will feature multiple concerts over five days at various venues in Clarksville and Franklin, Tennessee and Fort Campbell, Kentucky.
The premiere of America’s Haydn Festival, April 4-8, 2019 will honor the father of the Symphony and the String Quartet, Franz Joseph Haydn.
FRANKLIN PERFORMANCES INCLUDE:
Friday 4/5: String Quartet Concert at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church
Monday 4/8: Full Orchestra at The Franklin Theatre
FOR MORE INFORMATION, TICKETS & FESTIVAL PASSES, CLICK HERE
Gregory Wolynec, Gateway Chamber Orchestra Music Director commented that the roll-out of the new festival could bring even more national attention to Middle-Tennessee, already known as a music tourism destination.
“This festival will be truly one-of-a-kind; there isn’t one like it anywhere in the country,” he states. “Haydn is a composer that we have dedicated so much of our first 10 years to, with performances of his works becoming a calling card for our orchestra. Celebrating the incredible scope of Haydn’s creations, from beginning to end, with some of Middle Tennessee’s finest musicians is the perfect way to start a new festival. His musical career was so expansive and influential that we’ll have inspiration for years to come.”
This new festival will spotlight performances by string quartets and the full Gateway Chamber Orchestra at venues in Clarksville, Franklin and Fort Campbell.
Wolynec went on to add, “We are especially pleased to present a performance for the military community at Fort Campbell Army Post as part of this first festival. Soldiers, their families and members of the military community are invited to hear some wonderful musicians in a very up close and personal setting.” According to Wolynec the date, time and location for the Fort Campbell event will be announced soon.
America’s Haydn Festival will kick-off at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 4 with a String Quartet concert performed at First Presbyterian Church in Downtown Clarksville.
The same program will be presented at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, April 5 at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Franklin.
At 4:00 p.m. on Sunday, April 7 the GCO will present Haydn’s symphonies No. 1 and No. 104, the famous London symphony at the George and Sharon Mabry Concert Hall at Austin Peay State University in Clarksville.
On Monday, April 8th at 7:30 p.m. the same program will be repeated at the Franklin Theatre in Franklin.
GCO Principal Cellist Michael Samis will be featured at both venues performing Haydn’s 2nd Cello Concerto. Samis was previously featured in collaboration with the GCO in his critically acclaimed 2014 debut recording.
America’s Haydn Festival will also be the launching pad for the newly formed Tennessee Military, Veterans & the Arts Chorus. The new choral ensemble will make its premiere appearance to the public at the Sunday, April 7 concert in Clarksville. Members of the chorus include active-duty military service members, veterans and spouses; giving them the opportunity for creative expression through music.
Gateway Chamber Orchestra season ticket holders will have the opportunity to buy String Quartet performance tickets at a discounted rate.
To purchase tickets, visit www.gatewaychamberorchestra.com.
America’s Haydn Festival Franklin Performances:
String Quartet – Friday, April 5, 2019 – 7:30 p.m. – St. Paul’s Episcopal Church
Full Orchestra – Monday, April 8, 2019 – 7:30 p.m. – The Franklin Theater
For Festival Passes CLICK HERE
Franklin Theatre Celebrates Fifth Anniversary
The historic Franklin Theatre will celebrate the fifth anniversary of its reopening in June and invites the community to a special series of complimentary movies, backstage tours and a music concert to say thanks for helping make it an important cultural showplace in such a short period of time. The historic movie house reopened in 2011 to inspire, enrich and connect our community as a world-class music venue and multi-purpose arts facility after an $8.5 million rebuild.
In just its first five years, over 350,000 patrons have laughed, cried and been touched by award winning musical talents from most every genre, world class live theater, special movie experiences, and scores of community and business events. As a new centerpiece on Franklin’s renowned Main Street, it has spurred a new emphasis on music and art in Williamson County that complements the area’s Civil War history, unique shopping and amazing local food scene. The venue now averages more than 600 events each year and contributes a direct annual economic impact of $3.8 million. As a non-profit recipient of the community’s generosity, the theater’s leadership is especially proud to have helped area charities host events that have raised over $3 million since reopening.
To celebrate its patrons, several complimentary events are planned. Ticket reservations will begin at 11 AM on May 27th
June 11 at 10 AM, 1, 4 & 7 PM – Free Movie Day
Celebrating the Franklin Theatre’s longest tradition of movies on Main Street, the Franklin Theatre will screen classic movies all day for free. Movies will include the original Snow White & The Seven Dwarfs, American Graffiti, and The Sting. Patrons are also encouraged to bring a canned food donation for OneGenAway, a charitable organization that provides food to the hungry. Movies will be shown at 10 AM, 1, 4 & 7 PM.
June 19 all afternoon – Open House and Backstage Tours
You’ve seen the marquee and possibly the lobby and auditorium…but have you been backstage and heard the whole story about the Franklin Theatre? Tours to be given on the hour from 1:00 PM until 5:00 PM.
June 24 at 8 PM – SHEL Live Performance/Album Release
Celebrating the Franklin Theatre’s newest tradition, live music, nationally recognized Americana band and Franklin favorites, SHEL join us for an album release concert. The show will be complimentary, but please reserve tickets in advance. We’ll also encourage a donation that evening to Tails of the Trail, an animal advocacy group.
July 1 at 7 PM – Art Scene at the Theatre
Also celebrating their fifth anniversary is Franklin Art Scene. Franklin’s monthly art crawl takes participants through downtown Franklin’s historic buildings, and celebrates Williamson County’s unique artistic talent. Visit us to see an art exhibit as well as an artist creating works on site. Following Art Scene, at 9:30 PM the Franklin Theatre will present a screening of Saving Banksy.
Originally opened in 1937 as Franklin’s Main Street movie house, the Franklin Theatre was shuttered in 2007 amid rising rents and operational costs. A massive fundraising effort and total renovation allowed the theatre to reopen in 2011 as a world-class music venue that continues its original purpose as a movie house.
The Franklin Theatre has hosted a remarkable talent roster of award winning artists including Sheryl Crow, Art Garfunkel, The Judds, Michael McDonald, Amy Grant & Vince Gill, Ronnie Dunn, Michael W. Smith, Guy Clark, Ray Price, Del McCoury, Jars of Clay, Switchfoot, Leon Russell, Mac Davis, Little River Band and many, many more. The theatre has also served as a backdrop for a host of television productions, videos, webcasts, live album recordings and the ABC network series Nashville.
For tickets and more information about these events, visit: www.franklintheatre.com or call 615-538-2076.
The Franklin Theatre is located at 419 Main Street, Franklin Tennessee.
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