James G. Severns Theatre Dedication

A ceremony to name the main performing facility in Ophelia Parrish in honor of retired Truman State University faculty member James G. Severns will take place at 5 p.m., April 8, in Ophelia Parrish. The public is invited to attend.

Severns began his career at Truman in 1959 and served as professor of dramatics, director of the College Players (later known as the University Players) and chairperson of the theatre department for 32 years. He directed and produced two to three plays a year with University students and worked with the Traveler’s Community Theatre in Kirksville. Severns also co-founded and served as general manager of The Ice House Theater in Hannibal, Mo. While at Truman, Severns received a Fullbright Award to study in the People’s Republic of China.
He retired from the University in 1991 and was granted the title of professor emeritus of dramatics. He and his wife, Patricia (Harris ’66) reside in Chicago.

The James G. Severns Theatre, newly constructed in 2000, features a maximum seating capacity of 243 seats and is host to numerous plays and performances. The facility includes 132 permanent seats on the main level, 46 permanent seats on the balcony level, and 65 flexible seats.

Truman’s Office of Advancement, guided by the James G. Severns Theatre Committee, is well under way with a $300,000 campaign to attain naming rights to the facility as per Foundation policy.

Resources from the project will be directed to an endowment, and annual earnings will be used for equipment, technology enhancement, refurbishment, and ongoing maintenance of the theatre.

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