Historic Trinity-on-Main Looks to the Future

By Geoff Elterich

Staff Writer

Trinity-on-Main, one of the best venues for entertainment in New Britain, will hold a fundraiser to ensure its important role in the community on Saturday, June 25th. For the last 10 years, the picturesque building has offered a unique entertainment experience to the city.

photo by Geoff Eterich

The front of Trinity-on-Main. Photo by Geoff Elterich

The road to get where it is today, was not easy. In 2000, the beautiful Romanesque church at 69 Main St. was known as Trinity United Methodist. The congregation could not afford necessary reconstruction work, so it was set to be demolished, according to current general manager, Gary Robinson.

“A group of local citizens decided to save the building. Mayor Lucian Pawlak essentially chained himself to the wrecking ball to prevent the demolition,” explained Robinson.

With the support of the New Britain Area Conference of Churches, a committee was formed to decide what to do with the building. This committee eventually organized as an independent non-profit, Trinity-On-Main, Ltd, who now owns the building.

Beginning in 2005, they have hosted a wide variety of shows. Robinson calls it “the star in the center of the city.” One of their most recent shows was Hair, put on by the Phoenix Theater Group. There were nine performances of Hair, but its last weekend of shows was cancelled. Robinson says that The Phoenix Theater Group does about two shows a year, performing such classics from the ’60s as Rocky Horror Picture Show and Jesus Christ Superstar.

Another recent show, Musicultura Presents: Homenajea a PoloMontañez, was also cancelled, but hopefully that’s not any indication of things to come. Robinson says that he’d always like to see more people in attendance, but there has been a good turnout at most shows.

Their website states that their goal, “is to create a much-needed cultural center for Central Connecticut for Arts, Community and Education.” The wide variety of shows is just one aspect of the refurbished church. On Tuesday, June 21, they are hosting Life Line Screenings, where people can be evaluated for risk of stroke. You can register online and receive a $10 discount or call 1-800-690-6495.

Trinity-on-Main is run as a volunteer organization. They are always in need of more volunteers to help at shows, with concessions, ticket sales, making posters, and more. Robinson says they are now reasonably self-sufficient, but they want to raise funds for a professional manager to devote time and effort to becoming profitable. They will be searching for grant funding, in addition to the fundraiser.

The Early Summer Annual Fundraiser will be held from 12 to 10 p.m. There will be food and raffles throughout the day, and at 7 p.m., there will be a tribute to Bobby Darin and Connie Francis.

There will be a few more shows throughout the summer. On Sunday, June 26, from 4-6 p.m., the Queen Ann Nzinga Center will be hosting a special evening of poetry, music, and more called Journey of a Lifetime. They are currently holding auditions for a presentation of Chicago in August. Visit their website and for more upcoming shows and keep an eye on their billboard on the corner of Main and Chestnut for updates.