Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Intro to Theatre 101

This is to introduce a new blog on theater in New England. The New England states have a rich tradition in theater, even though it was banned in Massachusetts in the mid-18th century. Somewhere along the line our fascination with the footlights overcame our suspicion, mostly.

One hundred years later railroads brought stock companies, and with the advent of the automobile and the heyday of summer stock, actors who had been or would be famous in films were well-known to local audiences in West Falmouth, Cape Cod; Williamstown, Mass.; Westport, Connecticut; East Haddam, Connecticut; Harrison, Maine; and Skowhegan, Maine.

Many actors started their careers here, in some cases in theaters that were no more than a barn in a field, a boathouse on a pier. Past and present come together in the theater, where present-day performances of classics, or just well-worn chestnuts are spiritedly referred to as “revivals”, as if they never really expire, as if the last act was never called.

If you are a member of the theatrical community, which always includes patrons, then I hope you’ll find this blog a resource for current productions and a place of nostalgia for New England’s rich theater past. If you have any memories you’d like to share, just leave your comments. We’d all like to hear them.

I’ll be posting every Wednesday. Think of it as a Wednesday matinee.

On with the show. Places, please….

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