FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Schorr Family Firehouse Stage:
How do I buy tickets for Schorr Family Firehouse Stage events?
Tickets may be purchased online at www.goodwilltheatre.net. Go to Events & Tickets. Search for the date and time or via the show name. Click on the purchase link. Complete the forms to pay via credit card. Tickets must be paid for at time of purchase.
If you would rather purchase tickets over the phone, please contact us at our Administrative Offices at (607) 772-2404, ext. 301. We normally work Monday through Friday from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM and on weekends several hours before show time.
Do I need to pay when I make a reservation? Why?
Yes. All tickets must be paid for when they are reserved. There is no way for our system to hold an unpaid ticket for you. This ensures that no tickets are wasted.
What forms of payment do you take?
In person, we take cash, checks (with 2 forms of identification), credit cards (Visa, MasterCard, American Express & Discover) and Schorr Family Firehouse Stage gift certificates. Over the phone and online, you must pay with a credit card (Visa, MasterCard, American Express & Discover). There is a place to enter a discount code online, if one is available to you.
Is there any reserved seating?
Because the seating arrangement can vary from show to show, the Schorr Family Firehouse Stage seating is general admission and based on a first-come, first-served basis. Doors open approximately one hour before the performance. The only reserved seating available is for Hook & Ladder members and sponsors. (We designate these seats with a sign)
Why do I see RESERVED signs sometimes?
Seats can be reserved (and designated so by a sign) by Hook & Ladder members and sponsors.
How does the General Admission seating policy work?
Schorr Family Firehouse Stage seating is general admission and based on a first-come, first-served basis. Doors open approximately one hour before the performance. When you arrive you take the seats you prefer that are still available. Sometimes you can make new friends by joining a table that is not full.
Is the seating cabaret style for all events?
Seating is usually set cabaret style with small tables of four. However, depending on the show, theater style (rows of seating) is sometimes used. Feel free to ask us what type of seating is offered for the show you are attending.
Where can I park for Schorr Family Firehouse Stage events?
Parking is available in the small lot off Corliss Avenue, the small lot off Broad Street and in the unpaved lot between the Goodwill Theatre and the Schorr Family Firehouse Stage (construction permitting). Metered parking is available on the streets and in 2municipal parking lots 1 to 2 blocks away from the Firehouse on Willow Street.
What is the Hook & Ladder Society?
The Hook & Ladder Society is a membership opportunity for the Schorr Family Firehouse Stage with several benefit levels. Proceeds are used to provide educational and family friendly programming at a reasonable price at the Schorr Family Firehouse Stage.
How do I get my portrait on the Audience Wall?
Audience Wall portraits are painted by local artist John Federowicz and are available in a variety of sizes and prices.
Where did the beautiful wood bar in the Firehouse come from?
The Art Deco front and back bar came from the old hotel that resided two doors down from the Firehouse at 40 Willow Street. The hotel formerly housed Glenn Gardner’s Music Box Lounge, the Amsterdam and several other popular musical venues. The hotel was demolished in 2011. The bar at the Schorr Family Firehouse Stage is from that building and each section was carried by a group pf volunteers to the Firehouse in one piece.
What is the history of the Firehouse building?
The 1899 Romanesque former Municipal Building Central Fire Station building, located at 48 Willow Street, was built by Sullivan and Badgley Builders. Funds for construction were partially donated by the Lestershire Boot Company, the predecessor of the Endicott Johnson Shoe Company. The Village of Lestershire was renamed Johnson City in 1916. The building housed firefighting equipment, the fireman’s clubhouse including sleeping parlors, a gymnasium and bowling lanes. As a community center, dances and community sings were held and civil defense classes met during the 1950s. The police station also occupied the structure. Most municipal functions, such as tax collection, trustee meetings and courtrooms occupied the building until May 1979 when it was purchased by a private developer who converted it into apartments. It later became a slum property. Goodwill Theatre, Inc. purchased it is 2006. The Schorr Family Firehouse Stage opened in 2007. The entire roof and stone window sills have been replaced. The Wall masonry is being repaired and some windows are currently being replaced.
Who runs the organization?
Goodwill Theatre, Inc. was established in 2001. Its mission is to create a professional regional performing arts complex and magnet training academy that will enrich the lives of our residents and visitors. Goodwill Theatre, Inc. is a registered 501(c)3 organization. Our federal identification number is 16-1612834.
How is the programming paid for?
Programming is paid for by ticket sales, grants, corporate sponsorships, private underwriting and memberships.
How do you select acts and artists?
Acts are selected by the Goodwill Theatre, Inc. CEO, Naima Kradjian, with input from staff and board.
Can I rent the Schorr Family Firehouse Stage for a special event?
The Schorr Family Firehouse Stage may be rented for special events during the day or the evening, pending availability and review by the CEO and board.
What is the final vision for the Goodwill Theatre project?
The Goodwill Theatre Performing arts Complex and Professional Training Academy will be comprised of three historic Endicott-Johnson Shoe Company Buildings connected by two newly constructed “infill” buildings and a central loading dock. The historic buildings in the complex are the Goodwill Theatre building itself (Goodwill Theatre), the Municipal Building Fire Station (Firehouse) and the EJ Medical Building (Clinic). The complex will contain four (4) state of the art performance stages of differing sizes and styles to increase entertainment options and enhance the versatility of student’s skill sets. It will also contain multiple lobbies, rehearsal halls, production facilities, offices, support space, a library and student lounge and classrooms. Goodwill Theatre, Inc. will present and create Theatre for Young Audiences (TYA), classics, new work, dance, puppetry, comedy, chamber music, cabaret, music, film, visual and media arts as well as interdisciplinary work. It will also serve as rental space for local cultural organizations.
Professional training in the backstage arts, arts administration, design, production, as well as performance will be areas of study in a certificate, degree and audit basis.
The Goodwill Theatre Performing Arts Complex will serve as a catalyst for the economic revitalization of the Southern Tier and Greater Binghamton by adding jobs, bringing patrons and students to the center of Broome County, and fostering the development of supporting businesses. It will provide a unique opportunity for interaction among the region’s performing arts groups through collaborations around programming. In October of 2007, Goodwill Theatre opened the Schorr Family Firehouse Stage that hosts over 65 events annually.
How much will it cost?
The sale of Rehabilitation Tax Credits combined with the Capital Campaign will fund the creation of the Complex in phases. As the project progresses the cost to complete the Complex changes. Please feel free to contact us for more information.
What is the next step in the project?
The Goodwill Theatre building has been cleaned out and 90% stabilized. It is now open for public tours! We are in the process of completing final planning for Phase One of the project. Phase One will consist of complete stabilization and adaptive re-use of all 4 floors of the Firehouse Building and an ADA compliant entry lobby addition of new construction on the north side of the building. This addition will have stair towers, an elevator and a loading dock in addition to the lobby. The basement will house offices and rehearsal space and the Schorr Family Firehouse Stage on the first floor will be enlarged. The second floor will have restrooms, dressing rooms and offices. The third floor, which is 2 stories tall, will contain 2 large rehearsal halls, one of which can be converted to a Black Box Stage venue. The Firehouse can then serve many community groups as well as double the programming currently offered. A French drain surrounding the Firehouse will be installed to repair the basement and foundation which will complete the full stabilization of this majestic building.
How long will Phase 1 take?
Our goal for completion is 2016.
What is Phase 2?
Phase 2 will consist of building a complete connecting Annex of new construction that will join the Firehouse building to the Goodwill Theatre building. This Annex will contain more stair towers and elevators and extend the central loading dock. A 399-seat thrust style stage will be situated on the first floor along with a large central lobby, cafe and box office. Central energy saving HVAC systems production/design shops, additional education and rehearsal space will be in this structure.
How long will Phase 2 take?
Our goal to complete Phase 2 is 2018.
What is Phase 3?
Phase 3 is the full rehabilitation of the Goodwill Theatre building which will include state-of-the-art theater equipment, a new organ, addition of a stage crossover and possible extension of orchestra pit, stage area and south side basement. The old interior dressing rooms on stage right and left will be demolished to extend the stage house. While the theater originally had 1100 seats, we anticipate the orchestra will hold approximately 600 seats and the balcony to accommodate 350. These comfortable seats will have a good rake, good legroom and the entire space will be ADA compatible for patrons and artists. The acoustics in this venue are already superb.
As proven by other historic theater renovations, the renovation of the Goodwill Theatre Complex and operation of the Academy will spur private sector investments in Village restaurants, shops, and office space. Additionally, the project will help attract and retain a skilled and educated work force and attract approximately 100,000 into the center of the Southern Tier. It is estimated that those 100,000 people and the 175 students will spend roughly $2.5 million annually.
How long will Phase 3 take?
Our goal for Phase 3 is 2020 which is 100 years after the original opening of the Goodwill Theatre Building in 1920!
What is Phase 4?
If needed, we can build a connection of the Firehouse to the former E-J Clinic building where we currently have Goodwill Theatre, Inc. Offices. As the Academy grows we will have this as an option.
Why not just build new?
The Goodwill Theatre building cost approximately $500,000 in 1920, which equals $ 5,813,953 in 2013 dollars. The estimated cost for renovation is $6,500,000 which does not include the addition of an ADA and code required lobby extension or theater equipment. However, a comparable theater venue of this size built from scratch would cost between $50,000,000 and 75,000,000!! (and there would be no guarantee we would get the great sight lines and acoustics that this building has.) Rehabilitation of an existing building is the ultimate recycling. You save the energy and resources of new construction and you don’t add to the landfill.
Where will the money for these capital projects come from?
Money for capital projects like this comes from federal, state, national and local community grants, private capital campaign funding and the sale of State and Federal Rehabilitation tax credits. Private donations, large and small over several years or form appreciated stock are welcome.
Can we really do this kind of project in such a small community?
YES! The Arts are a proven success for the revitalization of a local economy. Many communities our size have had very successful development projects anchored by a performing arts complex.
Why place the complex in Johnson City?
This project began when the Goodwill Theatre building went up for a tax sale and folks discovered the great acoustics and sight lines. Johnson City is where the building is located and it became obvious that the Firehouse could provide an excellent secondary venue thus ensuring sustainability. Johnson City is in the heart of the Southern Tier where 3 major highways come together providing excellent access.
How much money has been raised so far?
About $4,000,000* has been invested thus far. (*This figure is updated quarterly.)
What is the history of the buildings?
Firehouse: The 1899 Romanesque former Municipal Building Central Fire Station building, located at 48 Willow Street, was built by Sullivan and Badgley Builders. Funds for construction were partially donated by the Lestershire Boot Company, the predecessor of the Endicott Johnson Shoe Company. The Village of Lestershire was renamed Johnson City in 1916. The building housed firefighting equipment, the fireman’s clubhouse including sleeping parlors, a gymnasium and bowling lanes. As a community center, dances and community sings were held and civil defense classes met during the 1950s. The police station occupied the structure. Most municipal functions, such as tax collection, trustee meetings and courtrooms occupied the building until May 1979 when it was purchased by a private developer who converted it into apartments. It later became a slum property. Goodwill Theatre, Inc. purchased it is 2006. The Schorr Family Firehouse Stage opened in 2007. The entire roof and stone window sills have been replaced. The Wall masonry is being repaired and some windows are being replaced.
Clinic:The former EJ Medical Department and Hospital, located at 67 Broad Street, was originally a creamery and billiard hall that was purchased and expanded to become a part of the vast E-J medical plan that provided medical care directly to E-J workers and immediate family members. The Clinic is opposite the site of the first E-J factory building. Medical care was comprehensive which included dental, medical, surgical, maternity and more. The building also had a pharmacy and dispensary. It was donated to Wilson Hospital and used for many years as a medical clinic then donated in 1997 to the Johnson City Community Action Team who sold it to Goodwill Theatre, Inc. in 2004. It currently houses the Goodwill Theatre, Inc. offices, and several artist studios.
Goodwill Theatre: The 1920 Renaissance Revival Goodwill Theatre vaudeville house is also known locally as the Enjoy Cinema. Located at 36 Willow Street, it is an equidistant half-block from the site of the first E-J factory and Main Street. The architect was Sanford O. Lacey and the builder was William H Lane. Sanford O Lacey also designed the Stone Opera House and Security Mutual Building in Binghamton. The Magnificent proscenium theater with ornate carving and solid marble stairs was built with funds provided by George F. Johnson for the benefit of E-J workers and village residents. Main attractions included E-J minstrel shows, boxing matches, traveling shows and concerts. It later operated as a movie house until 1960. It was donated to Goodwill Theatre Inc. in 2002. The roof has been replaced and all rusting metal (fire escapes, old doors and hooks) removed from the exterior. 90% of the exterior walls have been stabilized and many windows bricked in. The entire building has been cleaned and environmental hazards have been removed, including an asbestos fire curtain. The majority of the interior plaster damage, which can be repaired, was caused by moisture from roof drains that vandals had plugged with concrete blocks. The building is structurally sound with superb acoustics.
How does the Endicott-Johnson Shoe Company history relate to the Goodwill Theatre story?
The Goodwill Theatre building is emblematic of the paternalistic position taken by industry at the turn of the century – a trend which is clearly articulated through the George F. Johnson and Endicott Johnson Shoe Company story. More specifically, the building stands as a monument to Johnson’s policies of “Industrial Democracy”, and their far-reaching effects which resonated outward to impact on the economic development of the Susquehanna Valley, patterns of immigrations and migration, and the daily life of the local community. Underlying Johnson’s commitment to the notion of “fair play” and his belief “. . . that you grant your worker a mind and a heart. You won’t recognize in him the same qualities that you possess. . . (for) wages alone, no matter how fair, won’t do it” was an attempt to break down the insurmountable barriers between capital and labor. The effort touched all facets of the community. Company-built housing sold at a moderate price to workers in the industry, some of which currently surround the Goodwill Theatre today, the establishment of shops, restaurants and year-round markets, and the provision of community facilities and amenities were just part of Johnson’s attempt to create a sense identity while fostering the promise of prosperity, upon which the company could grow.
The provision of a recreational facility was one element within Johnson’s larger scheme. The Goodwill Theatre essentially still intact, proves to be one of the finer examples. The structure, designed by Binghamton architect Sanford O. Lacey, is a characteristic interpretation of the Renaissance Revival style. By utilizing the grammar of antiquity, Lacey was able to endow the structure with a refined, prestigious appearance. Johnson insisted that the Goodwill Theatre have excellent sight lines from every seat and he spared no expense on what he believed would be his showplace.
Are the buildings on the historic register?
The 1920 Goodwill Theatre is listed on the state and national register. The 1899 Firehouse (former Municipal Building Central Fire Station) and the 1870 Clinic (former EJ Medical Building) buildings are contributing structures within the Johnson City National Register District which Goodwill Theatre, Inc. created as part of a Health and Cultural District Master Plan. All 3 buildings are listed as significant resources in the NYS Susquehanna Heritage Area.
What real estate to you currently own?
Goodwill Theatre, Inc. owns 36 Willow Street (Goodwill Theatre), 48 Willow Street (Firehouse) and 67 Broad Street (Clinic), as well as the empty lots on Willow Street and on Corliss Avenue between the buildings.
Why do we need another performance venue?A user survey was completed in 2004 as part of an NEA funded feasibility study Goodwill Theatre, Inc. commissioned before beginning to spend state funding. It became evident that there was a documented need for a venue of its size. This survey was recently updated in 2014 as part of the final Architect Master Plan. Many community groups need spaces with 400 and 900 seats in addition to the flexible small spaces the complex will contain. These groups also have a need for rehearsal and production shop space. The current venues in our community are heavily booked, lack good acoustics and production equipment and are very expensive to rent.
Will there be enough parking for the complex?
Yes! Parking is a key part of the overall planning. Negotiations are underway for collaborative solutions to add several additional parking areas within the Village.