I’m a firm believer that if you’re gonna bitch, you gotta be willing to call people out for the good things they do too. So since my last post got a little bitchy, I gotta make up for it now.
I don’t have ALL the details, but apparently someone successfully got the attention of the Mayor’s office and pointed out how unfair it was to have community volunteers pay, on average, over $2000 to park at the VBC to participate in community theatre. The mayor, Tommy Battle, agreed. A new system is being developed that will allow these volunteers to utilize a city parking lot, for free.
Unfortunately for me, this system isn’t quite ready yet, and the play I’m in next week will not have the full benifit of this new program. Or maybe it will. We’re not sure.
Leslie, the President of Theatre Huntsville, came by our rehearsal tonight to give us the nitty gritty. We’re going to be the test case for the new system. So it might… or might not… work. I’m sure, like any system, there will be bugs to work out. But this is a HUGE step in the right direction.
This is the first real tangible sign that City Government here in Huntsville actually respects the arts and the volunteers that give our city the culture that officials like to brag about but not support. I hope this is a sign that the new administration (took over this past October) is going to be more friendly to the arts than the previous one. I can’t say that the former mayor NEVER attended one of our plays, but I know she turned down MULTIPLE invitations to attend them. When you do six plays a year, every year, plus a bonus play in an open air amphitheater, you’d think she could fit us in sometime during her 12 years as mayor.
But maybe it is changing. Maybe the new mayor, despite the belt tightening the city is going through, recognizes that our value to the community is more than just publicity for out of town business. That we actually serve the community. I don’t know. But I know that through this simple act, the Mayor has impressed me more than the previous administration ever did.
Thanks, Mayor Battle. I appreciate you hearing our situation and responding to it. I hope you can come to our little show. I’ll be the idiot on stage who keeps dropping lines and looking like he’s going to puke. Wait, probably shouldn’t have said that. That’s not the best way to get people to come.
Thanks, Mayor Battle. Come see the funniest play Theatre Huntsville has put on this season!