This Is Me--2019 A to Z Theme

The Challenge of 2019 was the 10th! Since this was kind of a milestone year for A to Z my theme was a retrospective of sorts, looking at my 10 years as a blogger as well as ruminations about my life as it is and as I hope it yet can be. I've got places to be and people to see along the way. Hope you'll join me for this part of my journey...

Always a work in progress--welcome to my blog.

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Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Universities ( #AtoZChallenge )



I've spent several years going to college, but the best times I've had at any university were when I was attending some show or performing in one...


13-HYLTON-PERFORMING-ARTS-CENTER
Performing arts center George Mason University



8-ROBERT-HOWELL-BROOKS-CENTER-FOR-THE-PERFORMING-ARTS
Robert Howell Brooks Center for the Performing Arts  Clemson University


#AtoZChallenge 2019 Tenth Anniversary blogging from A to Z challenge letter U


        My previous post looked at the old vaudeville theaters that are still scattered throughout the country.  They are wonderful venues much of the time but there are even more performance locales at colleges and universities throughout the United States.  In the past I have played some of these--most I cannot recall--but a few stand out.

         It's hard to forget the big auditorium at the University of Lafayette in Louisiana that sits next to a large swamp with alligators and other native flora and fauna.  We played that one nearly every year for ten years.  Then there was the odd lecture room/theater at the School of Mines and Engineering at Montana Tech in Butte.  The place was so absurdly small that we had to play three shows for near non-existent audiences despite the fact that enough tickets had been sold to fill up the place at least ten times.  Thankfully turn-out was low at that one so we didn't have to face an overflow attendance.

        The lecture halls were the worst for a touring show such as the one I managed.  They often had odd shaped stages with no real backstage area which presented a real challenge to us.  On the other hand, one of the best concerts I've seen was Murray McLauchlan in a lecture hall at some university in Toronto.  Despite feeling like we were attending a college class, the concert was excellent and due to the small house it felt very intimate.

         Most universities have many facilities suitable for live presentations so there is a wide range of choices depending on staging needs and how many are expected for the performance.  A touring group, artist, or lecturer can make a career at just playing colleges.  This is something for authors to keep in mind if they are interested in going on a lecture circuit.  The opportunities are limited only by ones imagination.

           A university tour might be something for me or even you to consider.  Seems like something with a lot of possibilities.

           Have you ever seen a performance at a college venue?   Do you have a venue of this nature in your town?   Have you ever considered establishing yourself as an "expert" in some field so that you could go to colleges and other places to give lectures (and maybe sell your books)?
           











24 comments:

  1. I live near Wesleyan University and I LOVE going to performances there...amazing world music.

    Beth
    https://bethlapinsatozblog.wordpress.com/

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    1. Beth, universities usually have a broad range of entertainment options available.

      Lee

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  2. I've seen vocal and musical performances at college campuses (usually for free as a student), and talks on certain topics. I'd love if the University of Pittsburgh invited me to give a talk or book-signing in one of the beautiful classrooms in their Cathedral of Learning. Each is in the style of a particular nationality (e.g., Armenian, German, Syrian-Lebanese, Chinese, Greek, early American, Welsh). New rooms are regularly added.

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    1. Carrie-Anne, I used to go to so many free events when I was in college--from movies to lectures to concerts and more. Rarely did I have to pay more than $5 for anything back then. I hope you do get asked to do a book-signing and lecture some day.

      Lee

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  3. You ever consider a memoir, based on the places you've seen?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. CW, I'm always considering a memoir. I've even written some parts already.

      Lee

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  4. I've never considered performing but I do love going to the theater offerings at several colleges in our area, either student productions or touring groups.

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    1. LD, student productions are often very good.

      Lee

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  5. I've acted in shows on campuses, and done improv. The facilities definitely vary from place to place.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. OA, not only do they vary from campus to campus, most universities have so many options for places to present events.

      Lee

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  6. LOL - I already do speak at some college campuses!

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    Replies
    1. L.Diane, so you know what I'm talking about regarding this. That's great!

      Lee

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  7. I attended several performances when I lived in Detroit in the Wayne State University fine arts theater. Since being in Atlanta I've attended performances at Spellman University and at Georgia Tech Ferst Theater and Georgia State Rialto Thater. All are great spaces.
    www.findingeliza.com

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    1. Kirstin, I should start watching for more local events. We have so many colleges around where I am.

      Lee

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  8. I particularly like to hear music at university halls. Plays and talks are good but there's something about music in those venues that gets me.

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    1. Jz, especially when the hall is acoustically designed to make music sound better.

      Lee

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  9. When our daughter started at Sonoma State we saw Frankie Valli at the college and while he was good, we were disappointed that they would not let us get up and dance in our seats. I think that really limits both the performer and the audience. I think the performers like to see the crowd react.

    Janet’s Smiles

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    1. Janet, I would have liked that since I prefer to just sit and enjoy a concert. But music does have a knack of getting people to move.

      Lee

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  10. Those photos are gorgeous and impressive. I’ve attended lectures & some music productions in university lecture halls and have been pretty surprised at how well that can work- the talks not surprising, but other productions on stage there have worked well -

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    1. Susan S, remembering some of the innovating we had to do with our show, with enough imagination any show can be presented anywhere. Maybe not like it's supposed to be presented, but it can be done.

      Lee

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  11. We've seen piano concerts, Steve Martin, Arlo Guthrie and many others (even Bill Cosby before...) at university settings and always they've been good if not great. I like them because they tend to be a bit less expensive as well, or used to be...

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    1. Lisa, probably "used to be" as the concert market is probably pretty similar from place to place. Students might get some breaks. I know we got discounts when I was in college.

      lee

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  12. I know the place in Toronto and many older places have great acoustics. I have seen musicals at local college and it was excellent. They are known for the8r great take on musicals.

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    1. Birgit, I guess a lot of halls are built with great attention given to the acoustics--at least that would make sense. I've seen some very good college productions.

      Lee

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Lee