Home to over 660 performances, the historic Lehi High School auditorium is due for removal to make way for renovation. Opened in the fall of 1959, for 60 years the stage has been a special sanctuary for fine arts students. To pay tribute to the space they have cherished so long, all LHS performing arts alumni were invited to a Stage Farewell Social on Friday, February 28, in the current auditorium. A ceremony was presented by the Lehi Drama Presidency and the evening included refreshments, a slideshow, and a short program. Attendees wore their Lehi High gear- whether it was a favorite show shirt, choir sweater, or drama and dance presidency jacket.
Drama Teacher Mindy Nelsen has directed beautiful productions for nearly fifteen years on the LHS auditorium stage. “I think so many people have spent a big portion of their high school experience here- more than their own houses, so it’s a big deal to say goodbye to a place that was your home and was formidable to your learning and growing,” Nelsen said. “I’m excited for the technology of the new stage and the possibilities and things my students and I can do there. I’m really sad to lose our old space, but I understand we need to and that it is time to move over,” she continued. The new theater includes technological advances with lighting and sound, as well as over two hundred more seats. Choir, Band, Orchestra, Ballroom, Dance Company, Drama 3 and 4, Synergy, and Musical Theatre are some of the organizations ready to experience the change.
Mindy Nelsen, Randy Blackburn, and Cheryl Allgaier each gave a speech to honor the wonderful history they have witnessed in the space. The drama presidencies ranging from 2006-2020 took a photo together wearing the Lehi colors. Alumni felt nostalgic when Ms. Nelsen hosted a relaxation technique used in shows past. Production posters, pieces of sets from previous plays, and a picture collage were on display at the farewell. Lastly, alumni and students signed their names on small wooden stars that will be placed on a collage to create a galaxy art piece of all of the students who played a part in the theater, to be hung up outside the new auditorium.
Lehi City’s focus is on “pioneering the future.” The students, faculty, and construction around LHS are great exemplars of this as they work to make the move quick and easy while also acknowledging the memorable moments of the current building. Pioneers of graduating classes ranging from 1960-2022 were grateful for the opportunity to give the beloved theater one last curtain call.