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  Knickerbocker Theatre to Shift Emphasis to Live Events
  
     HOLLAND -- Greater campus demand for live-performance
  space has prompted Hope College to reduce the scope of the
  film series presented at the Knickerbocker Theatre downtown.
     "The increasing desire to use the Knickerbocker as a
  venue for live events has made it difficult both for the
  film series and for the people wanting to do live events,"
  said Dr. William Reynolds, dean for the arts and humanities
  at Hope.  "Although the film series is educational, the
  college views the live events that are being put on by and
  for Hope students as more central to our educational
  mission, and we felt that they deserved greater
  consideration."
     "We're not, however, giving up the films entirely,"
  Reynolds said.  "The theatre will continue to show films of
  the type that we have had before, but on a more limited
  basis to better accommodate other uses."
     Hope has operated the Knickerbocker Theatre since 1988,
  and has shown primarily art and foreign films.  Each fall,
  spring and summer film season has run approximately 14
  weeks.
     A four-week series is being planned for the coming
  fall, with the schedules for the spring and summer still to
  be determined.
     With the college short on auditorium space, other
  demands for the Knickerbocker Theatre, which seats more than
  500, have grown steadily through the years,
  according to Reynolds.  Even with the longer film series
  running, the theatre has hosted live Hope events ranging
  from activities for New Student Orientation, to readings
  through the Visiting Writers Series, dance concerts, the
  Great Performance Series, Alumni Association activities, and
  programs of the student Social Activities Committee.
     One problem for the film series, Reynolds noted, is
  that such events can require the space not only on the days
  they're presented, but also for set-up and removal, often
  disrupting the film schedule for multiple days.  At the same
  time, he said, the desire to disrupt the schedule as little
  as possible kept Hope from using the theatre for even more
  activities.
     This year's fall film series, which is still being
  booked, will run October 24 through November 22, and a
  similar, four-week model is one option being considered for
  the spring semester.  The nature of the 1998 summer season
  has not yet been determined--although Reynolds said that
  it's possible that the absence of school-year needs will
  make the changes less dramatic.
     The current summer series will run through Thursday,
  Aug. 21.  The film "Anna" is showing through Thursday, Aug.
  21.
     The Knickerbocker is closed on Sundays.  Additional
  information about showing of "Anna" may be obtained by
  calling (616) 395-4950.

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