Boise Little Theater's history brings spooky spirits to auditorium

Boise Little Theater
Posted at 10:41 PM, Oct 29, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-30 10:24:01-04

BOISE, Idaho — The Boise Little Theater has been around for over 70 years and is Idaho's longest-running all-volunteer community theater. While shows are happening, there may be more than just backstage help around.

Idaho News 6 teamed up with Western Idaho Paranormal to look into some of Boise Little Theater volunteers' spooky claims in the past.

Some claims include the feeling of being watched, lights flickering on and off by themselves and faces appearing in windows.

These are known to be friendly spirits. Boise Little Theater Supervising Stage Manager Jay Parker says none of the encounters with these lingering spirits have been harmful or scary.

"There's a lot of skeptics out there who don't believe it. From my personal experience, I know they are here. I know they are present," Parker said. "The ghosts that we have encountered here in the theater are really super nice, really super friendly, and they seem to be presently happy here."

Parker added that sometimes when sets are being built, or actors are practicing on stage, they can feel a presence as if someone is watching them.

Ida-haunts: Boise Little Theater

"It definitely felt like you're being watched. Few times I saw shadows in doorways and heard some strange sounds tonight that we're hoping we caught on our recorders," Trevor Palmer of Western Idaho Paranormal says.

So, where did these spirits come from? In 1956, a devastating fire destroyed the original Boise Little Theater at Gowen Field. During a show, "The Fifth Season," a fire took over the stage and engulfed the entire theater.

"During the fire, of course, people panic and get out and then the two people who perished in the fire; one came back in the theater to save the furs which were on loan from one of the fur shops in Downtown Boise," Parker said. "The other guy who actually perished in the fire, his wife went into one side of the building, he went to the other side, he couldn't find her so he went back into the theater to find her and unfortunately he perished in the fire because of that. We can feel them here, you know. Their presence is known."

Throughout the night, noises were heard, and the ghost hunting equipment picked up some unusual triggers.

"I believe there are some things here that we haven't been able to explain, and I know that people have had experiences here that suggest that there is a haunting here," Palmer said.

This unique round theater has become a home to not only the actors but also the ghosts.

"I think when the theater burned down, and they lost their lives, unfortunately, when we moved from there to here, they needed to be a part of the theater still, and the people who are here feel the love. They feel they're a part of something still, and I think that's why we don't have any negative experiences with them because they are here and with us. They are wanting to be a part of our productions."