The twin patinas of exhaustion and excitement from Sunday night have started to melt away which has allowed me to focus on a couple of things besides eating and sleeping. Among those are the various statistical reckonings that can be done in the aftermath of this year’s RTCC awards.
First off: attendance. According to the Barksdale ticketing system, 472 people officially attended the event on Sunday. However, my understanding is that the Governor’s boxes live outside the official system and there were 8 people distributed between the two boxes. Also, I had an incredible crew of teenage volunteers working the show and the 9 of them shared 3 seats between them, meaning that there were really an additional 6 attendees, meaning that in my own personal accounting attendance was more like 486. Why do I care whether it’s 472 vs. 486? I don’t really but I expect to be telling people that “nearly 500” people attended and this is my public justification for that claim.
The awards have been held at the Empire twice before. Official attendance was 395 last year and 469 the year before that. So however you slice it, attendance was up this year, which makes me very happy.
Also, I reviewed the People’s Choice vote last night and was pretty amazed at the broad range of selections. Twenty-four different productions received at least one vote, plus there was a vote for Hairspray (which wasn’t officially eligible), one vote in general support of Swift Creek Mill Theatre, and one vote that didn’t actually have any production selected. I also know that a couple individuals used the People’s Choice voting just to make donations, as the money collected exceeded the number of votes – thank you generous people!
There was a total of 101 votes cast and the top five productions in order were This Beautiful City, [title of show], Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? and Once on this Island. While the popularity of these productions didn’t surprise me, it was interesting to note what shows were tied for 6th: Dog Sees God and Theatre IV’s The Velveteen Rabbit. While those shows didn’t garner a lot of love from us critics, the productions clearly had their fan bases.
I’ve just started to peruse some of the pictures on Facebook from the evening. And while it was mentioned several times on Sunday what a great and supportive theater community we have here, I’d just like to add that it’s a pretty damn attractive crowd as well. Later today or tomorrow, I’ll address some of the questions and comments that I’ve fielded in the wake of the awards. And then I expect it will be time to (reluctantly) move on…