‘It’s been a long intermission’: Indoor performances returning to Theatre Lawrence this weekend
photo by: Theatre Lawrence
In-person, indoor theater performances are returning to Theatre Lawrence this weekend, and the organization is striving to do as much as it can to ensure a safe experience.
When the community theater welcomes people inside for the opening of “Love, Loss, and What I Wore,” there will be numerous precautions in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic, executive director Mary Doveton said.
Everyone will be masked: volunteers, greeters, audience members and the actors — who will be wearing clear masks. Capacity in the theater will be reduced from 300 to 90. Every other row will remain empty, and there will be two seats between groups or single attendees.
“So no matter where you sit there will be at least six feet between your party and the next person,” Doveton said.
In an effort to go paperless, audience members will purchase tickets remotely and will be checked in the night of the performance via a clipboard with the names of attendees. Touchless features have also been added to the bathroom, Doveton said.
Two new additions to the theater will help keep it disinfected. A needlepoint bipolar ionization air purification system will constantly clean the air being circulated in the theater, and before and after every performance, a Tersano cleaning and disinfecting system will spray the main theater. Any surfaces that may have been touched in the theater, lobby or bathroom areas will also be cleaned before and after every performance.
When asked if Theatre Lawrence would put on more performances than usual in order to make up for lost revenue due to reduced capacity, Doveton said they will have to see how demand is.
Theatre Lawrence is also currently promoting a deal where people can pay to have their face on a cutout that will occupy a seat in one of the empty rows. Doveton said the program will help the theater not look quite as bare.
‘Love, Loss, and What I Wore’
“Love, Loss, and What I Wore” is a comedic yet touching look at the stories of women’s lives through their clothes. It is based on Ilene Beckerman’s 1995 book of the same name and was adapted for the theater by sisters Nora and Delia Ephron.
“It’s a series of stories about women and their clothes – and how so many of our memories of our lives…are triggered by the clothes that we wore,” Doveton said.
Most of the show is a series of monologues, which is part of the reason the theater chose it. The five actresses — Widge Yager, Karen Langsford, Haley Roberts, Kelli Szrot and Courtney Chacon-Holle — are able to stay socially distanced the whole time.
“We’re excited and we’re nervous and we’re anxious to kind of pick up where we jumped off last March. It’s been a long intermission,” Doveton said.
“Love, Loss, and What I Wore” opens Friday, Oct. 16 at 7:30 p.m. Other evening performances will take place on Oct. 17, 22, 23 and 24. Matinee performances will take place on Oct. 18 and 25 at 2:30 p.m. Tickets are $30. Theatre Lawrence is located at 4660 Bauer Farm Drive.