812.323.3020 114 E Kirkwood Ave. Bloomington, IN 47408
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Rental Support Programs


Arts Start Up Seminar logo

Have you always wanted to put on a show at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater? Do you dream of starting your own dance company? Do you aspire to bring your favorite musician to your favorite stage? Do you know just the movies to build the next Bloomington film festival? The Arts Start Up Seminar connects the expertise of the BCT staff and partners to community members who want to create the next big thing in Bloomington. Applying the philosophy and business approach of entrepreneurship and the startup industry, the seminar is an annual day-long workshop, usually held in the spring, that offers enterprising artists, organizers, and promoters the opportunity to learn the basics of imagining, planning, and executing a successful event.

This seminar is ideal for people who have an idea they want to implement but is also open to those who are just interested in learning more about the event planning process. It includes information specific to planning events at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater, but the majority of the content focuses on event conceptualization and planning in general. Those who complete the workshop are eligible for entry into the Arts Start Up Competition, which selects promising ideas for further coaching and development and ultimately chooses winning entries that will receive rent-free use of the BCT or the Ivy Tech John Waldron Arts Center to launch new programming.

Arts Start Up Competition Timeline:

  • March – Seminar is hosted by BCT staff and community partners.
  • September – Event proposals are due.
  • October – Winning proposals are announced.

Funded events must take place in the following calendar year.

2018-2019 Preliminary Workshops and the Seminar
all events are held at the Monroe County Public Library
register through Nonprofit Central

Panic-Free Planning
Thursday, December 6, 2018, 3 – 5pm

Marketing Your Event or Organization
Thursday, January 17, 3 – 5pm

Event Tech 101
Thursday, February 21, 3 – 5pm

Arts Start Up Seminar
Saturday, March 30, 10:30am – 5pm


The Buskirk-Chumley Theater began as the Indiana Theatre, a silent movie house, in 1922. We honor this legacy by offering the BCT Movie Partner Program to encourage film events at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater on Sunday afternoons and evenings. For only the cost of labor and projection equipment ($400 in most cases), this program enables anyone with an interest in film to screen a movie at the BCT on a Sunday without the usual rental fee or event insurance requirements. Options include organizing a fundraising event, sharing a documentary about an important issue, hosting a film festival, or developing a creative arts event with a focus on film.

Interested in becoming a movie partner? Here are a few things you need to know:

  • Your contract cannot be confirmed more than 60 days in advance, although you are welcome to express interest in a date at any time so it can be noted on our booking calendar.
  • We host a church service every Sunday morning, so you will not be able to access the building before 1pm.
  • Although creative programs are encouraged, film must be the primary aspect of your event, with at least 70% of the event focused on the screening.
  • We can advise you on obtaining the licensing for your film, if needed.
  • Our online availability calendar can tell you what dates are still available for your event.