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The “Play” Envelope is Empty Now, But Not for Long

envelope_largeLast Saturday I used my last ticket for the arts season at the U. Now the envelope inside my kitchen cupboard is empty.

One of the auspicious benefits of working on campus is that every August, the College of Fine Arts publishes the foldout calendar of all its arts events on campus. The 2008/09 calendar listed 139 events. I bought tickets to about a dozen.

Last year I picked from a literal smorgasbord: plays (student and professional), concerts, an anniversary gala, even one conservative comedian (the plain-spoken Dennis Miller), which was a more unusual offering in Utah than you might at first imagine.

The last performance was the most unusual–Cirque Eloize. Circus-like, as the name suggests, there were the expected breathtaking acrobatics, but the performers’ awesome movements, when combined with music, story, dance, mime, lighting and sound, transported me well beyond the standard canvas tent.

Another highlight was the Youth Theatre performance of Jungle Book. My eight-year-old nephew and I were happily situated on the front row (another benefit of buying in August). As he’d never been to a play before, his dad made sure he knew not to talk to the performers on stage. We’re still debating if the elephant or monkey was best.

Then one Sunday night, a co-worker and I met for a Sundays@7 free faculty concert. Take “free” under advisement. Sure, we parked for free and got in for free, but then invested in recordings of all 24 Chopin preludes we’d heard played with such passion by Heather Conner that night in Libby Gardner Hall.

I can’t wait for August.

In the meantime, the Red Butte Garden Concert series opens soon. I’ll see Etta James with a friend and a picnic basket on June 4. And as a subscriber, I got a jump on the Pioneer Theatre’s season last week. There is a world premiere called Touch(ed) scheduled in January.

Looks like the envelope won’t be empty for long.

The "play" envelope awaiting a new season of fun and culture.

The grand, non-electronic filing system.