By Brenda Meadows, Branson Globe Staff Writer
The Andy Williams Moon River Theatre, 2500 W 76 Country Blvd., will be auctioned off online on July 27 through July 29.
Online property broker Ten-X Commercial is starting bidding for the 11.57-acre property at $1.5 million. The property has 550 parking spaces, 17 bus spaces and is within the Branson Entertainment Zoning District and is in the Opportunity Zone.
Williams personally designed the $12 million 45,147 total square feet state of the art theater. It includes an apartment, a large lobby area and has 2,057 seats. After the Branson 2012 Leap Day tornado, the theatre got a new roof and was renovated including fire sprinklers throughout the entire building.
The Andy Williams Moon River Theatre opened on May 1, 1992 and is noted, not only for the talent that has performed on its stage, but its scenic exterior and gardens. It was awarded the state of Missouri Conservation Award for Developed Land Use because of its unique architecture and site planning, featuring its Moon River water fall and koi fish pond.
After Williams passed away from cancer in September 2012, Jimmy Osmond of the Osmond Brothers became the head of theater operations.
He later changed the name of the theatre to the Andy Williams Performing Arts Center and Theatre in 2016.
Osmond, suffered a stroke in December 2018 and has not been able to continue working there.
In 2019, the theatre was put up for sale for the price of just under $6 million. Osmond, who is still recovering, has not been performing since the stroke and is unavailable for comment about the auction. Mike Fusek, who is a senior advisor with SVN and is from the local real estate company working with Ten-X, referred us to the SVN’s website for information they have listed.
The TeN-X website describes the property being auctioned: “The Moon River Theatre’s design reflects the beauty and environmental integrity for the surrounding Ozark Mountains. The 48,000 square foot structure is set among 11 acres landscaped with foliage, rock formations, waterfalls and a rippling stream. It won the 1992 Conservation Award for Developed Land Use from the State of Missouri and is the only theater ever to be featured in Architectural Digest.”
There is no way of knowing yet if the auction bidders will be in the performing arts genre or may have other plans for the property, but Magician Rick Thomas whose Mansion of Dreams Show is headlining at the Andy Williams Performing Arts Center and Theatre is waiting to see what the end result will be.
“What I do hope is that ‘Mansion of Dreams‘ continues as a needed force of entertainment in Branson,” he said. “It is worthy of its new owners, whoever they may be.”