The Drowsy Chaperone
Photo by Amy Maddox
AN IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT FROM JIM CRISP
FOUNDING ARTISTIC DIRECTOR
This is a momentous year for us and for me. This is to be my last season as your Artistic Director, and I find that I have arrived at this moment with many thoughts and so many emotions. It’s more than a little daunting to face the idea of my last season being unsure of what lies beyond August of 2018. This is my thirty second season, and I hope to bring you a year of great, thoughtful, joyful, and moving entertainment. I put an awful lot of thought into these choices. Of course it was difficult to narrow down all the plays on my “bucket list” to a final six. My goal was to select, first and foremost, quality, world class works that will delight you and challenge and excite our wonderful pool of actors and technicians, inspiring them to do their best work. From the comic genius of Neil Simon, the Disney hit Beauty and the Beast, the Mozart of American musical theatre, Stephen Sondheim, to Shakespeare and Noel Coward, this is a season that is sure to deliver all the best of what live theatre is all about. Please join us for an unforgettable season and join me for my farewell as Artistic Director of the organization I helped found and guide with my life’s work.
It has been my privilege to create memorable productions and to tell some of the great stories for YOU. I have been so grateful for your friendship, your support, and the time we have shared together. Retirement was not something I thought about, thinking it was a long way off. But suddenly, thirty years had gone by and the timing seemed right. I had always wanted to be able to help select my successor, because I wanted to find someone who shared my vision and passion for what we do and the way we do it. I have found that person in the young and enormously talented Richard Frazier. He has been working with us for the last seven years so we know him well and our actors know him and trust him. I can say with conviction that Theatre Macon is in excellent and capable hands. I feel that I have had my time and it is now time to pass this wonderful organization on to the next generation who will protect it and help it to continue to grow. This is bittersweet as I think often of the people who worked so hard to help build our theatre and so many who were patrons who are no longer with us. Friends met and loved and lost. Then I think of all those still with us who I need to thank personally, dear and great friends who became an invaluable part of a great enterprise. I think of my father and mother, who thankfully lived to see us open our new home in 1995 and sat on the front row cheering us on that splendid evening. I also must thank all of You for supporting us and for being loyal and enthusiastic friends and patrons. I want to thank all the actors who have trusted me with their time and talent, all the beautiful and amazing young people who have grown up on our stage, all the dedicated people who were willing to do the hard work of sitting on our board, and all the people who toiled backstage never receiving the applause, but who were so willing to contribute in so many ways to make the magic happen. And I must thank my partner, Roben, who has been by my side for twenty two years and has always inspired me to be the best version of myself and to do ever better work. The last twenty two years would not have been possible without his support. His loving hand is everywhere at the theatre.
Lastly, I want to ask you to consider giving generously to our endowment fund to protect the legacy of Theatre Macon – my legacy – for future generations of our community to cherish and enjoy.
I think of that night thirty one years ago when we began with our first production of The Miracle Worker. It is my hope that just as Helen Keller learned to listen, and speak and see with her heart as she found her way out of darkness and solitude into light and community, that you have experienced those same kind of moments with us, in our – YOUR - theatre.
I am ever grateful,