“Through the voices of stars like Bob Gunton, Julie Ann Emery, the Crabtree family, through the remembrances of locals who recall the theater as just a dream, with family memorabilia, production photos and with legacy footage from a variety of sources we share the history of a creative grand gamble that is still paying off for the actors, the audience and the entire Upper Cumberland Region. Just as importantly, by turning a lens on the skills of props, painters, stage managers, ‘fly’ operators, and the musicians secreted away beneath the stage, this film explores the blood-and-bone as well as the mechanical anatomy of a modern, successful theater through the unseen, talented few who bring the magic to so many. With the aid and interest of a community, they found a worthy, inspiring and lasting legacy. This is their story.”

-Todd Jarrell


On Tuesday, April 7th, the staff of CCP and community leaders attended a presentation at the Palace Theatre which was hosted by Crossville Marketing Director Billy Loggins, CEO/GM of WCTE Becky Magura, and Emmy winning director Todd Jarrell. Mr. Jarrell proposed a public television documentary titled: BRIGHT LIGHTS; LITTLE CITY: 50 YEARS OF THE CUMBERLAND COUNTY PLAYHOUSE. This documentary would serve as a celebration of one rural Appalachian community which embraced creativity without reservation, ensured success in self-determination, and through five decades has pursued the joy of self-discovery through the Arts. This documentary would be filmed over the course of the summer highlighting CCP 50th Anniversary special events, current running productions, and interviews with staff, with options to travel to destinations outside of Tennessee to film Alumni and other important members of the Playhouse Legacy.

The initial budget for the Project is $125,000, of which 100% is to be raised by CCP. This Project budget will cover everything, from film rights, closed captioning, cameras, crews, possible trips to NYC or LA for interviews, and a website dedicated to the film and funding. The prediction is that this will come under budget.

As of January 1, 2017 we have raised $117,000.00.

WCTE will serve as the fiscal agent for the project. All checks should be made payable to WCTE and will be held in a restricted fund designated for BLLC. Or please visit the BLLC website to donate with a credit card!

Click the link to access the website http://www.brightlightslittlecity.org/