From the Director: Spring 2018

It’s pretty clear around these parts that the first part of 2018 has been the story of The Greatest Showman.

The movie, loosely based on the life of P.T. Barnum and starring Hugh Jackman, started from an uncertain release to become a highlight of the holiday season. There have been sing-along showings, a Golden Globes win and an Oscar nomination, and, best of all: a lot of growing interest in Barnum as a showman, innovator and icon.

And so in January, the Museum hosted a deeper dive into Barnum’s life story with a presentation of “The Real Story Behind the Reel Story,” and the response was phenomenal: joined by Ellis Rubin, the actor who plays young Barnum in the film, a capacity crowd heard all about Barnum’s world – not to mention, the selfie station with our real and fictional Barnum cutouts (now dubbed “Thineas” and “Flat Jackman”) was a big hit. The program was so successful, I’ll be presenting it again on a few upcoming dates, including here at the Barnum Museum on April 5th, and on the road at locations including Coney Island – just check out the Events page for more information.

Meanwhile, the Museum’s staff and board are still hard at work creating the Barnum Museum of the future.

With support from the Connecticut State Department of Economic and Community Development and State Historic Preservation Office, the restoration of the historic building continues. Thirty-year old renovations are being removed to expose the glorious period windows and decorative elements that have been long hidden by modern drywall and exhibit material. It’s a joy to see the beauty of the original building return. As for the iconic dome that was so severely damaged by the tornado and hurricanes, it too is undergoing stabilization to ensure it stands as Bridgeport’s defining emblem for generations to come.

Always thinking about our community, we are starting a new program this spring, welcoming artists, poets, innovators, thinkers, makers, entrepreneurs and more: everyone who has a story to tell is invited to participate in Bridgeport’s inaugural Pecha Kucha Night! Our 2018 programs season features an assortment of lectures, summer tours, and our popular Wicked Bridgeport haunted walk in the fall. Come one, come all! It will be a great year!

We are open to the public every Thursday and Friday, with Saturday summer hours coming soon! We look forward to seeing you.

Kathy Maher
Executive Director