A message from Alice
Why would I do something that takes up at least twenty four weekends a year, causes me to miss most social events, prevents me from even starting to watch a television series, requires sacrifices by my family, ruins my diet resolutions, and limits my contact with non theater friends?
From the time I sat through my first tech rehearsal in 1962 (dubbed “the tech rehearsal from hell” by the cast and crew), I was hooked. And once I touched a light board, there was no looking back. Fifty seven years later I’m still sitting through tech rehearsals and playing with lights. I’ve learned to control variables so tech rehearsals are relatively manageable, and my lighting skills are woefully behind the times, but not much has changed. I’m still hooked, and there’s no looking back.
Along the way I’ve directed over sixty productions, worked on lights for hundreds of shows, acted in a fair number, and done every job there is to do in the theater. A lot of the time I was faking it–I still barely know how to use my cordless drill and I won’t touch a circular saw. My idea of costuming is to get out the hot glue gun. My rule of thumb for set building is that there’s nothing so bad it can’t be hidden with masking tape and paint. I learned how to do almost everything from a book or by watching other people, despite having done undergrad and graduate work in theater.
What do I have to show for all those years and shows? A few mementos on the wall, a couple of awards? But it’s the intangibles that are the real reward—the friendships developed over the years, the people who drove me crazy that I learned to love, the personal growth, the joy of making the audience laugh and cry, the satisfaction of taking a bunch of words and a group of disparate people and turning them into a theatrical experience, the sheer exhilaration of attempting a hard project and making it work.
In many ways the Dolphin Playhouse is the cherry on top of the sundae. It’s a dream we had for many years and not only did we get our own building, but we’re making it work. We’re paying our bills, we’re doing quality theater in an intimate setting, and we’re growing. So with some self satisfaction, I can say, “Not bad, old girl. Not bad.”