Sunday, May 18, 2008

The Best Man

Fort Findlay Playhouse

OK, I know this sounds like something about a wedding but it is actually about a play I attended tonight. The Best Man is a play by Gore Vidal. It was also a movie which starred Henry Fonda and Cliff Robertson.

As some of you know, I was a member of the Fort Findlay Playhouse for more years than I care to count. Ok, for about 30 years. I was pregnant with my son when I worked on my first show there. Over those years I acted, directed, produced, stage managed and worked every backstage crew known to man. I quit due to job responsibilities and burn out. But, I do miss it. And I miss all the friends I had at FFP. And so, when we are in town and there is a Playhouse production on, we try to go.

And tonight was closing night for The Best Man. The cast consisted of 3 women and 9 men. There was a day when the FFP were lucky to get 4 men to audition. Now I don't know how many auditioned for this show but the 9 Patrick Davis, the director, cast were 9 extremely strong actors as were the 3 women. My daughter will recognize a few names here. Steve Froelich was William Russell. I've seen Steve in other shows but he was amazing in this show as was Jim Toth who played the ex-president. I think this was the best I have ever seen Jim and he has been doing shows there since 1963. Also in the cast was Bill Rayle who lives with us. He, too, was very strong in his role. Steve's wife, Bonnie, played his wife in the play. I've known Bonnie for many many years and her acting never fails to amaze me. She is so versatile.

Oh, and Karen, we sat next to Vicki and Phil McClurkin during the show and caught up with them. Gee, it's fun to see old friends again!

This morning, we also went to Max and Erma's for breakfast. It was a fundraiser for the Playhouse. FFP members served as waiters and waitresses. Many of the cast members from tonight were there bright and early this morning. The Playhouse lost a lot during the horrible flood we had in Findlay last August. Everything in the basement was lost as there was water up to the ceiling. And many of the props, flats etc which were stored down the street were also lost. And no flood insurance since they were told they weren't in a flood zone. Guess again!! Anyway, Max and Erma's helped raise a little bit of money to help out this morning. It was much appreciated.

In case you are interested in reading a few items about FFP and the flood go here, here, and here.

Anyway, I just wanted to give the Playhouse, the cast, and crew a standing ovation (which they got by the way) for a job well done.


MariBy said...

Oooh...I had a little wave of nostalgia there! :) Several years ago, I did a stint or two myself backstage (costumes, props) in local plays.

Tink *~*~* said...

*raises hand*

Recovering theater/opera rat here.

I sometimes get wistful, especially since I am now old enough to play the Mother "Climb Every Mountain" Abbess and Cousin "You'll Never Walk Alone" Nettie.

Tink *~*~*

Shama-Lama Mama said...

Oh, so good to hear they are back up on their feet. Write and let me know what the basement looks like now. Is it renovated? Or just usable?

Say hi for me if you run into any old friends!