The Royal Theatre was build by Thelonious Jobson in 1889. Throughout the last 130 years it has been known as Jobson Opera House, Logan Theatre, Blees Theatre, and Macon Theatre. For generations it has served as the area destination for entertainment. Lectures, debates, as well as travelling shows of all types have graced the Royal’s stage. Macon’s first high school didn’t have an auditorium, so the Royal was the site of school concerts and graduations into the 1920s.
In 1959, the building was converted to “movies only” and showed films up until the mid 1990s. Throughout the 90s, the theatre underwent a major renovation inside and out, preparing it to better serve modern theatre patrons.
Maples Repertory Theatre had its first season here in 2004. In 2020-21, MRT did another extensive renovation including new seats, heating, cooling, and other aesthetic changes to make the building the lively performing arts venue it is today.
In 2023, Maples Repertory Theatre was granted funds from the ARPA through the state of Missouri’s DED to expand the operations of the Royal Theatre with updated lighting, sound, and dressing room areas, as well as the expansion of the scene shop, rehearsal venue, and a dedicated space for the education program at Maples Rep. Fundraising and groundbreaking for this project will begin in 2024.
We were lucky to receive donations and grant money to make this happen. With Maples Rep being a 501(c)(3) organization, all individual contributions are tax deductible. It is with generous support from our sponsors and donors that we are able to continue to provide professional theatre to North-Central Missouri audiences.