Stillwater News Press

Local Columnists

May 3, 2014

AND STILL THE WATERS RUN: New venue celebrates great art, craftsmanship

STILLWATER, Okla. — Where am I?

What is this place?

How did this happen?

These are questions that Russ Teubner wants everyone to ask themselves when they step “Backstage” – a new hospitality venue at the corner of Main Street and Seventh Avenue in downtown Stillwater.

The space was serving as a storage area for his company, HostBridge Technology, but had seen lots of action through the years – from the site of the first post office to a grocery store turned into a vaudeville stage. As the old Aggie Theatre, the building had sunk into disrepair until Teubner rescued it for his first software company’s office space.

“When we took possession in the 1990s, the building had a sloped floor, no seats and a broken popcorn machine,” he said.

 While renovating the location, Teubner has maintained the architectural integrity of one of Stillwater’s oldest buildings. In converting the space, he harnessed the talents of many local and regional craftsmen.

“The electrical work in here is a work of art,” Teubner said.

Usually electricians are called everything but a work of art, said Mike Field. His company, Field Electric, was selected as the contractor to meet Teubner’s electrical specifications for the venue. Electricians, Jack Henderson and Drew Chambers, worked on the building with Teubner signing their names like artists on a special ledge in “Backstage.”

“Part of the work of art is doing it correctly and aesthetically – including hiding some elements – and sometimes there’s a trick to that,” Field said. “This morphed into a great project - there’s certainly a craft to it.”

Teubner appreciates great craftsmanship.

Modern LED lighting has transformed a ceiling, comprised of basic materials like corrugated tin and electrical conduits, into something expressive and dynamic. Teubner said the end result would not have been possible without the craftsmanship of electricians 16 years ago – but it also required new technology, and equally skilled craftsmen, to create something very special.

“It’s a thing of beauty. The buildings on this corner have been a laboratory to experiment with new ideas both virtual and physical. Assembling the creative work of others has been a 20-year multimedia art project,” Teubner said. “In the software business we always integrate something existing with something emerging. Making them work in harmony is our goal – and this integration mindset has guided the design of Backstage.”

He hopes individuals, local businesses and institutions will seek out his new hospitality venue for their gatherings - both serious and fun. The “first look” for Backstage was a Friends of Music evening to benefit the Oklahoma State University Music Department in April.

“The space is not for a typical event . . . but allows hosts to offer a premium experience to their guests unlike anything in the state of Oklahoma,” he said.

To check for the venue’s availability, contact Marsha Forbes at 405-533-2950.

Elizabeth Keys writes for the Stillwater News Press. “And, Still the Waters Run” tells stories about people and events in the area. Share your stories by emailing activities, photos or news tips to

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local Columnists
  • Farmers Market 07-31-14

    The Stillwater Farmers Market is open every Monday at Stillwater Medical Center from 2-5:30 p.m. and every Wednesday and Saturday in Strickland Park from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.
    What’s at the market this week?

    July 30, 2014

  • View from the country 07-30-14

    When baling hay in the “olden days,” if the feeder couldn’t put a nice size gob for a flake of hay, he’d lose his job. The horses providing the power walked in a circle.

    July 30, 2014

  • PIONEER PRIDE: District must meet needs of all students

    July 30, 2014

  • The Library Shelf 07-29-14

    Summer@ Your Library has come to an end. We recorded our highest registration and attendance. We want to say a big thank you to all of our sponsors, but especially to the Friends of the Library who fund most of the programming.

    July 29, 2014

  • 3- Pool Mom of three children Jacinta Sears.jpg AND, STILL THE WATER RUNS: Stillwater pool teams shooting for national championships in Las Vegas

    July 27, 2014 4 Photos

  • AT THE LIBRARY: 7-27-2014

    July 26, 2014

  • HELPING HANDS 7-27-2014

    July 26, 2014

  • Live Well 07-27-14

    The topic of the legal drinking age is an ongoing debate among American politician and citizens. Among the countries that set a legal drinking age, 18 is the most common. Along with Mongolia, Indonesia, Palau and several states in India and Egypt, the United States is an outlier with a minimum purchase age of 21.

    July 26, 2014

  • GREATHERON.jpg Life at Boomer Lake 07-27-14

    The presence of the fledglings is rare, but there are still several juvenile birds around if one looks for them, like the American Robin and the Northern Mockingbird. I have seen nesting Eastern Bluebirds over the past couple of days, so we’re not over the hump of raising young yet.

    July 26, 2014 4 Photos

  • Down Home 07-27-14

    This isn’t the first time and more than likely it won’t be the last. I’m putting myself back on the wagon as I’ve eaten my way through the last pile of “fat” clothes I have stashed in my closet.

    July 26, 2014

Buy & Share Photos
NewsPress e-Edition
NewsPress Specials
AP Video
Fighting Blocks Access to Ukraine Crash Site Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida Workers Dig for Survivors After India Landslide Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow Southern Accent Reduction Class Cancelled in TN Raw: Deadly Landslide Hits Indian Village Obama Chides House GOP for Pursuing Lawsuit New Bill Aims to Curb Sexual Assault on Campus Russia Counts Cost of New US, EU Sanctions 3Doodler Bring 3-D Printing to Your Hand Six PA Cops Indicted for Robbing Drug Dealers Britain Testing Driverless Cars on Roadways Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey Raw: Obama Eats Ribs in Kansas City In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast Raw: Otters Enjoy Water Slides at Japan Zoo NCAA Settles Head-injury Suit, Will Change Rules Raw: Amphibious Landing Practice in Hawaii
NDN Video
Heartwarming 'Batkid Begins' Documentary is Tear-Jerker You Won't Believe the Celeb Cameos in "Sharknado 2" Pitch Invading Morons Cause Chaos - @TheBuzzeronFOX Orlando Bloom 'Takes a Swing' at Justin Bieber In Ibiza Sadie Doesn't Want Her Brother to Grow Up "Maxim" Hotness! See Jessica Alba's Sizzling Spread Two women barely avoid being hit by train Broken Water Main Floods UCLA Orlando Bloom and Justin Bieber Reportedly Came To Blows In Ibiza Meet the Man Behind Dumb Starbucks Chris Pratt Adorably Surprises Kids at a 'Guardians of the Galaxy' Screening NOW TRENDING: Peyton Manning dancing at practice "The Bachelorette" Makes Her Decision Thieves pick the wrong gas station to rob Golden Sisters on '50 Shades' trailer: 'Look At That Chest!' Staten Island Man's Emotional Dunk Over NYPD Car - @TheBuzzeronFOX GMA: Dog passes out from excitment to see owner Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted 'Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1' Sneak Peek Florida Keys Webcam Captures Turtles Hatching
Must Read