After 12 standing ovations at the Summerlin Performing Arts Library Theater we moved the show to the Pahrump Winery in their outdoor theater for 3 nights ... and 3 standing ovations. Whew! Glad that's over, or am I?
SHOWTUNE! is a new musical revue covering the history of Broadway songs from 1904 to 1966 when, in my opinion, the showtune died in its popularity. The show obviously pushes buttons (intended so) to those who enjoy the golden era of the Broadway book musical. And as much fun as it was, it taught me a lesson.
Where are the young people in the theater? Theater across America is mainly supported by those, and this is a guess, about fifty-years-old and older. We live in a world of instant communications, but nothing can ever take the place of live theater. We need to get generation X, Y, or is it Z now (?) into the theater. It's one of the primary reasons I founded www.talkinbroadway.com. And it's a concern to anyone connected with theater. Even the American Theatre Wing has a program to introduce theater to students in the New York area. It's something we all must do; share what we know to be a good thing.
In Las Vegas, it's a whole other ball of wax for theatre companies. It's different here than any other city in America (as far as I know). Money, of course, is a universal problem, but because Las Vegas/Henderseon is a newborn community, the theatre companies in those cities have a real rough time of it. There are no theaters and there is no interest in building them. Many companies scramble to find a space to do a show in a community center, a library theater, or even outdoors.
Space is rented in strip-malls, but landlords become greedy because of the huge growth in population. Witness the Las Vegas Little Theater, who have been around the longest. Their monthly rent was nearly doubled, but yet, they grapple the bull by the horns, and continue to operate in a shoebox of a space; turning out quality theater from time to time. The Theater in the Valley company wasn't so lucky. They were simply evicted from their space, so I imagine, they're scrambling for a new space.
Jade Productions, perhaps the best company in town, draws the talent from tech to acting, doesn't have a space, but rents out Library Theaters, lighting equipment, backdrops, or whatever it takes to do a quality show. Jade produced Showtune!, and did so with T.L.C. Well, as a result, that bug has bitten me, that theater bug, and I want to work with this company to bring more quality theater to the Las Vegas area.
While the main goal is to find a performance space (Steve Wynn, you out there?), the company, like any other company, has many needs. And this is where you, or someone you know, can come into play. I'm of the belief that if you believe in something, nothing is impossible. I need your help, and I'll tell you how.
We need lighting equipment, as well as sound equipment. I've found out that many professional regional theater companies receive grants and replace, or update, their sound and lighting equipment. If you know of such a situation, please have them get in touch with me. I've already acquired 11 elipsoidal lights, 1 par, and 8 cyc lights. We need more, of course, in particular, a pre-set lighting board, not necessarily computerized or digital, analog is fine. And it would be tax-deductable and going to a worthy cause.
In short, we need to build a theater in Vegas town. I believe so strongly in the Internet that I think anything is possible! I also think that if you build it, they will come.
(Showtune logo by Miner Miracles Graphics.)
Wanna' talk to others about this column or anything else theatre related? Check out All That Chat
Search What's New on the Rialto