Carysbrook High School was not only the first countywide high school built in Virginia, but it was built in the depth of the depression — in 1934. Half way between Palmyra and Fork Union, it is representative of school architecture of the day — two story basic brick with an auditorium on the rear.
The unique thing about the auditorium is its wonderful acoustics. Sound engineers even today cannot explain for sure why some auditoriums are great, and others not so. But no entertainer has appeared at Carysbrook without commenting on the great acoustics.
School integration in the late 1960s spelled doom for Carysbrook. Neither it, the all white high school, nor Abrams High School a mile away, the all black high school, were large enough to handle a combined student body, so the current Fluvanna County High School was built and opened in 1974.
The county social services departments and later the county library, quickly occupied the space at Carysbrook. But what of that great auditorium? It was to stand empty for nearly 20 years.
Used for school storage, it succumbed to dust, mold and decay — the seats removed and thrown away. In 1992, a new vision for Carysbrook started to take shape between the dreams of Fluvanna newcomers at Lake Monticello and the memories of former Carysbrook graduates who still lived in the county.
Over the next five years, under the direction of the newly formed non-profit group, The Fluvanna County Arts Council, those dreams and memories evolved into a fine facility with state of the art lighting and sound equipment and a dedicated group of volunteers to keep it moving. The newly remodeled facility was dedicated on October 18, 1997. Each season since, between 10 and 15 programs have been offered to the public for their pleasure and entertainment.