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Marquee Magic

Education and Entertainment meet in the heart of downtown Fairfield, CT

Article by Kristin Huntington

Photography by Abby Cole Photography

Originally published in Fairfield Lifestyle

The recently restored Sacred Heart University Community Theatre is a cornerstone of cultural enrichment for audiences of all ages in the heart of downtown Fairfield. It has quickly established itself as a choice destination for education and entertainment throughout Fairfield County.

The theatre first opened as a vaudeville house in 1920 and became the center of entertainment in Fairfield—hence the former name of Fairfield Community Theatre. The 500-seat cinema and performance venue was later restored in 2019 and is now operated by Sacred Heart University. This world-class, fully reimagined and charming theatre offers something for everyone, including jazz, Broadway and Cabaret, live entertainment, blockbuster and classic film viewings, educational programming, thought leader series, Sacred Heart University musical concerts and private events.

When an opportunity was presented to become the title Singer-Songwriter Series sponsor for the theatre, Victoria Fingelly, a lifetime Fairfield resident and well-established local real estate agent, jumped at the chance to give back to the town of Fairfield and the arts community. Vicky has watched the theatre evolve since her childhood and provide countless opportunities for the community to embrace and enjoy the arts. Many of Vicky’s fondest memories include attending movie screenings and performances at the theatre with her father, Nicholas Fingelly, who established Nicholas Fingelly Real Estate in 1948. “Sponsoring the Sacred Heart University Community Theatre Singer-Song Writer Series is truly an honor. The theatre has always been at the very heart of the Fairfield arts community, and it is a privilege to support this special venue that has brought so much joy to me personally and to our town. The theatre is an iconic venue to visit, and live entertainment provides a wonderful platform for all to admire and appreciate the arts.”

“I fondly recall enjoying innumerable movies at the theatre with friends. It was a big deal since we could attend shows without adult supervision by the age of 10,” Fingelly reflected. The resurgence of the theatre is a welcomed addition to downtown Fairfield. In addition to the newly renovated theatre, the area surrounding the theatre was also recently revitalized to include new restaurants, an updated outdoor seating area, and a flower and butterfly garden. Patrons of the theatre have the opportunity to make a special evening out by adding dinner to a visit to the theatre. Old Post Tavern, which is a classic American tavern located at the corner of Post Road and Unquowa Road, features an abundant outdoor seating area, Isla & Co., a new Australian-style restaurant, is conveniently located next door to the theatre. Il Pelicano, featuring Mediterranean fare, is another superb pre-theatre dining option just around the corner.

“The Sacred Heart Community Theatre is a great destination for a special evening out to enjoy highly acclaimed, world-famous singer and songwriter performances. The recent Joan Osborne performance was a personal favorite of mine. Although I was unable to attend, I heard the Judy Collins performance was fabulous. The setting was intimate and the acoustics were outstanding. This special venue attracts renowned talent and is not to be missed,” Fingelly concluded. Renovations to the theatre include a new and larger stage, a balcony with a VIP Lounge, a renovated front office, state-of-the-art digital technology and restorations to the original building structure. The interior now provides well-spaced rows, making the seating extremely comfortable. The exterior features a beautifully restored neon marquee, which showcases theatre events in bright lights.

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