After 25 years at its perch outside Rockville, Metropolitan Ballet Theatre is leaving for new city.
The dance nonprofit plans to move to a bigger studio in Gaithersburg this spring, the MBT board of directors announced Thursday.
Metropolitan Ballet Theatre is a nonprofit that serves 300 students at its studios at Travilah Square. The organization puts on two major productions each year, according to Paula Ross, Director, MBT’s director of development and marketing. “Nutcracker” auditions are already underway, according to MBT’s website.
The new location, at 220 Perry Parkway near the fairgrounds, will have 7,700 square feet of space, which is an upgrade from the 2,400 square feet MBT has grown accustomed to at its current location—an office building at Darnestown and Travilah Roads.
There are plans to build a Walgreen’s at Travilah Square and
those plans call for the demolition of MBT’s site and a Burger King within the
same lot, Montgomery County planning records show.
Ross said MBT’s lease expires at the end of this year but the organization has known for years that this day would come.
The challenge for MBT, Ross said, was finding a new space that had all of the right criteria—square footage between 7,000 and 8,000 square feet, high ceilings and a safe environment for late-night rehearsals.
“There aren’t many places that fit our criteria and were affordable for us as a nonprofit,” Ross tells Patch.
Ross said MBT plans to invest $200,000 in the new location, with help from a $15,700 grant from the City of Gaithersburg.