Snow Leaves in its Wake Missed Opportunities

by RoxyRegionalTheatre on March 6, 2015

Corinne Bupp sings, “I believe there are angels among us,” in Honky Tonk Angels for the final two times, tonight and tomorrow at 8pm.

She has made a believer out of me, for I’ve experienced them myself: the kind soul Jacob Berkebile, who picked me up in the slush and snow of a recent Saturday morning, when I had finally given over to hitchhiking, and drove me to the theatre; and the father and son duo, Chris and Tim Smith, who shoveled snow to clear a path for those on their way to pick up the beautiful handcrafted Empty Bowls at Trinity Episcopal.

When I lose my faith in my fellow man, these simple acts of kindness bring that song to mind. “There are angels among us, sent down … from somewhere up above. They come … in our darkest hours … to guide us with the light of love.”

The snow seems to put everyone on edge: lost wages, lost revenue, lost time and, for us, lost performances. I’m not totally altruistic, but I do feel the loss of that opportunity to introduce this unique art form to some first timers, repeaters and our regulars. Most especially, I feel the missed opportunity for the first timers who come for the country music but, when given that taste, may try something else from our smorgasbord of theatrical choices.

To cancel is a hassle, having to get to the theatre to say we won’t be at the theatre. It means having to schlep up the hill to North Second, trudging up in the ice and snow, praying not to fall and hoping not to slide. It must be done, though, for one has to post notice and do what one can to prevent bursting pipes.

What better play is there for the times in which we currently live than Shakespeare’s Measure for Measure, a work which addresses justice and corruption, truth and injustice? These moral dilemmas are faced in all of Shakespeare’s plays, but add to that self-righteousness.

Our 30th production of Shakespeare in as many years is in rehearsal with Cody Boccia, Corinne Bupp, David Gautschy, Leslie Greene, John Hardin, Emma Justice, Amanda LaPergola, John Lampe, Mark Sherlock, Georgia Smith, Liz Tancredi, Matthew Whitfield and guest director Chris Davis.

I think of them as my children, but perhaps I should, as my friend Leslie Greene said when we were playing the parents of Hansel and Gretel, “Don’t tell them, but we are their grandparents.” So, as a proud surrogate grandparent, how pleased I am that our own Amy Wyer was chosen to receive the Acuff Circle of Excellence’s Ovation Award for Young Artist in Theatre. Madeline O’Connor, our Heidi, received first place in the English-Speaking Union’s National Shakespeare Competition here in Clarksville and is moving on to the state level; and Sidney McCarty, our jack-of-all-trades and the master of many, was chosen to receive a scholarship to Governor’s School this summer.

See you at the theatre!

[John McDonald]

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