Barre Opera House
The Barre Opera House is an opera house located in Barre (city), Vermont. It was built to replace the Barre City Hall/Opera House which burned down in 1898.

Beginnings
The new opera house, designed by George G. Adams, was constructed to replace the old one, and was finished on August 23, 1899. At the time of its opening, there were 1000 seats. For the following decades, the opera house served as a performance space for plays and many other forms of entertainment. People such as Helen Keller, Eugene V. Debs, George M. Cohan, Emma Goldman, John Philip Sousa and Tom Mix graced its stage. In 1912, two presidential candidates made speeches from the outer balcony: William Howard Taft and Theodore Roosevelt.

30's, 40's, and Closing
During the Great Depression and World War II, the opera house served mainly as a movie house. However, as other movie theaters were being built in and around Barre, the opera house was forced to close in January 1944. It would lie vacant for nearly 40 years.

Re-opening
Due to significant community support, the Barre Opera House re-opened in October 1982. However, it was in an advanced state of disrepair; windows were broken, few seats were left, and the outdated heating system did not function.

Renovation
For a decade after its reopening, the opera house underwent a series of small renovations which added curtains, stage lights, and a working heating system. In 1993, funds were raised for a massive renovation which added an elevator and balcony seating. Perhaps most importantly, the seating capacity was raised by 50% to 649, more than half of the original capacity. The renovations, which have already cost the community nearly 2 million dollars, are still ongoing, with another $400,000 of improvements still needed.

Today
More than 20,000 people attend events at the opera house annually. Many major artists, such as Noel Stookey, rising opera star Disella Larusdottir, and Robert De Cormier have performed in it in recent years. Many plays are performed each year as well, such as Gilbert and Sullivan's Pirates of Penzance. The opera house is the central venue of the Vermont Symphony Orchestra, as well as the local theater company, The Barre Players, and is renowned for its acoustic purity. The Opera House was mentioned in a National Geographic segment on towns in America.