Bastrop Opera House: 10 Fun Facts About This Central Texas Historical Venue

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This small-town theater packs a Texas-sized punch when it comes to delivering high-quality productions. Located 45 minutes east of Austin, it regularly welcomes guests from all over the state who come to be entertained.

With 134 years of history, it’s one of Bastrop’s cherished organizations. If walls could talk, those holding up the opera house could surely tell a good story.

Here are ten fun facts about the Bastrop Opera House you may not know.

1. Located in Bastrop, Texas, the Opera House was built in 1889 at a cost of only $15,000.

2. It welcomed 21 touring companies in its debut season.

3. For a time, it was used as a theatre for silent movies.

4. GI’s from nearby Camp Swift visited the Opera House to see the silent movies.

5. It did not have indoor plumbing when it opened. That luxury wasn’t add until many years later.

6. At one time, the Bastrop Opera House had a gun range under the raised stage.  Men would lie on their stomachs and shoot at the targets under the stage.

7. In the late 1880s, a robber was shot during a downtown heist and, bleeding from a gunshot wound, ran through the back of the opera house, through the audience, and out the front doors.

8. In the late ’50s through the early ’60s, it became a teen hang-out called the “Teen Tower.” It was a place where teens held dances and parties.

9. The first public event was held on October 1, 1889. It was a military ball and supper, attracting over 60 couples.

10. The Bastrop Opera House won multiple awards for its 2022 production of Little Shop of Horrors through Broadway World Austin’s Regional Awards.

The Bastrop Opera House now showcases nine major productions a year, along with special events such as the Valentine Cabaret and Dinner show. They also have a performing arts academy with more than 50 youth enrolled. The youth academy performs two of its own shows each year, in addition to its summer camp program, where they have the opportunity to perform again.

Learn more about the Bastrop Opera House and its event calendar here.

Featured Image Credit: Bastrop Opera House

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Karee Blunt is a nationally syndicated travel journalist, focused on discovering destinations and experiences that captivate and inspire others through her writing. She is also the founder of Our Woven Journey, a travel site focused on inspiring others to create memory-making adventures with their loved ones. Karee is passionate about encouraging others to step out of their comfort zone and live the life they dream of. She is the mother of six kids, including four through adoption, and lives with her family in the Pacific Northwest. You can learn more about Karee on her about me page.