After one popular local theatre company made its own announcement about permanent closure last week, yet another is following suit.
The last time a "Cedar Rapids Follies" production got off the ground was March 31, 2019. The temporary hiatus that followed was due to COVID at that time but it was announced earlier this week that additional factors including rising production costs would make it the final curtain call ever for the event.
The Cedar Rapids Follies fell just short of a 4-decade run
Every year, more than 100 volunteers including writers, singers, actors, set, and costume designers, many of whom were often well-known community luminaries would come together to entertain. The flood of 2008 created a brief need to move to Cedar Falls while causing thousands of dollars in damage to the group's theatrical assets and their home, the Paramount Theatre. In 2011-12, it went on hiatus during Paramount Theatre renovation and managed to come back strong in 2013.
The decision to close has been a long time coming
According to its website, the Cedar Rapids Follies is a "music, comedy, and dance spectacular that thrills longtime fans and new audiences alike."
Own a piece of the troupe's legacy
"Ballgowns, tuxes, children’s specialty costumes, hats, props, shoes, and fabric are ready to find new homes among the area’s schools, theaters, and dance companies", and will be available for the taking (and a requested freewill donation toward the Follies Scholarship program) February 25-27. Sign up to check it out and grab a piece of Cedar Rapids entertainment history here.
Cedar Rapids Follies is dedicated to the preservation of classic and contemporary musical theater and musical revue, reminiscent of the original Ziegfeld Follies. The purpose of Cedar Rapids Follies is to encourage the performance and enjoyment of choral singing, music, comedy, and dance in Cedar Rapids and includes outreach to surrounding communities through Arts education, recreational performance opportunities and scholarship
With that mission statement guiding the group over the years, it's hard not to think of this as a great loss and clearly even more difficult for the Cedar Rapids Follies group to announce they have taken their final bow.