Saturday morning was rife with all sorts of news, none of it particularly cheery. First off was hearing of the passing of “Hutch” Hutchinson, one of those legends of local theater. His obituary was in Saturday’s paper with a nice memorial slideshow available online. I only met Hutch a few times and can only remember seeing him on stage once – his Experiential Company folded not long after I started writing reviews – but he was very cordial to me and seemed extremely committed to doing good theater. He was responsible for a production that has taken on somewhat legendary status in my memory, Experiential’s production of “The Seagull” with a luminous Erin Thomas and the sizzling Justin Dray. While he hadn’t made an appearance on stage in a while, he had a significant impact on local theater and he will be missed.
I also called about tickets for the Holiday Cabaret on Sunday at the Barksdale and found out that it had been canceled, a deep personal disappointment since tonight was going to be the only night I could see it. It seemed sickness as well as a sag in ticket sales scuttled the show for tonight, an unfortunate thing for all involved.
I noted also the announcement that Barksdale and Theatre IV were going to cut ticket prices. While this is troubling as another indication of the economic turmoil the country is in, there is an aspect of hope in this move. It would be my hope that more people will go to theater due to the lower ticket prices and that perhaps this will grow the audience base. A boy can hope.
So Saturday started the weekend out a little rocky. But I’m feeling better (if a little melancholy) about today. I had a nice time hanging out with old friends last night. It was great to see a big piece on Firehouse’s “Scientology” show in the paper today. And I’m heading off to “This Wonderful Life” in a couple of hours, looking for an infusion of holiday cheer.
I hope you are having a fine weekend wherever you are and whatever you’re doing – and that you find time to sneak out to a show!