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Clemens Center Mission:

The purpose of the Clemens Center is to enhance the quality of life for all the region's residents by providing a diversity of excellent performing arts programming in a superior facility. 


Clemens Center Announces Weidemann's Retirement                                                       

The Clemens Center announced today that Executive Director Thomas Weidemann will retire on December 31, 2015.  Weidemann, who has led the Center since 1983, is credited with managing the organization through three significant renovation projects that have transformed the Center into one of the most majestic performing arts facilities in central and upstate New York.

The announcement was made during the Center’s annual meeting, which included the election of the organization’s Officers, the addition of new Trustees and a reception with former Trustees.

“During the past 31 years Tom had led our organization with the highest level of energy, optimism and enthusiasm,” said Michael J. Wayne, current President of the Clemens Center Board of Trustees.  “He is a Champion of the Arts, not just for the Clemens Center but throughout our entire region,” Wayne added.

Weidemann is credited with leading the organization through the 1987 construction of Mandeville Hall, and two significant renovations projects, Phase 1, completed in 1999, and Phase 2, completed in 2008.  More than $26 million was raised to complete Phase 1 & 2, which completely renovated the facility – inside and out – positively impacting every aspect of the theater experience, for both patrons and the performers and touring groups that appear on stage.

“It has been a pleasure, honor and privilege to have worked beside such a dedicated team of staff members and trustees over the course of these three decades” Weidemann offered.    “Success is built on the shoulders of scores of people – I’m grateful for having had the chance to work with so many wonderful community volunteers.”

“Tom has skillfully guided the Center for more than 3 decades,” according to Wayne, “and he is currently helping to craft a plan that will shape the future of our organization.  We’ve been fortunate to have had Tom’s leadership for so long and are pleased that he will remain a resource for us after he retires.”

According to Wayne, the Clemens Center Board will be conducting a national search to find a new Executive Director, and is working on a plan to publically celebrate Weidemann’s tenure with the Center later this year.

The Center also announced that Wayne, of Chemung Canal Trust Company, was re-elected as President of the Board of Trustees.  Other officers elected were: Vice President: Betsy Dalrymple, from the Sayles Evans Law Firm, Secretary: Dr. Fred Farley, from Arnot Health, and Treasurer: Judy McIntosh, of Mengel, Metzger Barr & Company, LLP.  New Trustees joining the Board are: Laury E. Poland, President of the Finger Lakes Wine Country Tourism Marketing Association, Meghann Reed, Marketing Director of the Arnot Mall and Robert Springs, Controller at Eaton Corporation in Horseheads.

About the Clemens Center

Located in the central Southern Tier of New York State, the Clemens Center is the region's premier performing arts center with two spectacular performance spaces. Mandeville Hall is a flexible, "black box" venue suitable for intimate performances. The majestic Powers Theater is an architectural treasure that has been newly restored to its vaudevillian-era grandeur. Magnificent murals, gold-leaf details and reconstructed opera boxes now adorn the theater just as they did when it opened in 1925. The 1,618-seat Powers Theater has been called the most beautiful theater between New York City and Buffalo - it is truly awe-inspiring! The recent renovation included expanding the stage and upgrading technical equipment, making it possible for the Clemens Center to showcase the biggest and the best in live entertainment. From blockbuster Broadway shows and dazzling dance programs to rousing rock 'n' roll concerts and feel-good family entertainment, the Clemens Center excites and delights audiences of all ages!

The Clemens Center is the perfect place to connect with family and friends to create memorable performance experiences that enrich, inspire and even amaze you. Our programming reflects the diverse interests of audiences around the region whose lives are enriched by music, dance, theater, comedy and more. From on-line ticketing to courteous customer service and easy parking, you'll enjoy a hassle-free performance experience.

With the renovation and reopening of the Powers Theater, the Clemens Center is well-positioned as a highly valuable community asset rarely found in a city the size of Elmira, New York. Our mission extends beyond entertainment and into the community through school programs, subsidized facility rentals and other support programs that help thousands each year. Like the Arnot Art Museum and the National Soaring Museum, we are proud to contribute to the cultural richness of Chemung County, improving the quality of life for all who live in our area.

The Clemens Center annually leases space to more than 55 tenants in our facility. These tenants include the following performing arts organizations: Elmira Little Theatre, The Orchestra of the Southern Finger Lakes, Thursday Morning Musicales, Rafael Grigorian Ballet Theatre, Common Time and New Heights Dance Theater. As "resident companies," these organizations provide community members with opportunities to perform on a professional theater stage.

Clemens Center Facts
  • The Clemens Center was formed in 1975, presented its first performances in the fall of 1977 and is now entering its 32nd season.
  • More than 100,000 Twin Tiers residents attend more than 100 professional and community performances in our facilities each year.
  • More than 15,000 students from pre-K through senior high experience live theater as a part of our annual Mary Tripp Marks School-Time Series
  • More than 200 volunteers contribute nearly 10,000 hours each year working as ushers, concession operators, ticket takers, receptionists and Board/Committee members.
  • Clemens Center membership includes more than 1,700 individuals and more than 160 businesses.
  • The Clemens Center is a private, non-profit 501(c)(3) corporation with a full-time professional staff.
  • The Clemens Center uses community resources wisely - operations are within budget and our endowment is continually growing.