By Chuck Nunn,
The Herald Journal
Published: Tuesday, July 5, 2016

It’s been a long time since the Utah Theatre has been the location of a live performance — a very long time.

“Eighty-two years it’s been, since any live performance took place on that spot,” said Michael Ballam, director of the Utah Festival Opera and Musical Theater, which owns the newly renovated venue. “And my grandfather was in it. Eighty-two years ago, that’s a long time to be asleep. I’m sure she’s happy. She’s been awakened.”

And the production Ballam envisioned bringing to the historic theater has been a big part of that awakening. This year’s festival opened with “Peter Pan,” a musical based on the play by Sir J.M. Barrie, on June 24 and will continue on select dates through Aug. 4.

“From the moment Larry and Gail Miller bought the Utah for us and I had the vision that it could become a live theater, which it was not at that point, ‘Peter Pan’ was always the show I thought we should open with,” Ballam said. “And so the technology that was put into this theater was so that we could do this.”

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