Engaging the public: Murphy’s marquee quotes humorously reflect times


Marquee quotes humorously reflect times

By John Hamilton - jhamilton@wnewsj.com



Dan Stewart, left, and Andrew Connarroe stand beneath Murphy Theatre’s marquee.

Dan Stewart, left, and Andrew Connarroe stand beneath Murphy Theatre’s marquee.


John Hamilton | News Journal

WILMINGTON — The show must go on — sort of.

Even though the historic Murphy Theatre’s upcoming shows have been canceled due to the pandemic, they’re finding ways to keep the public engaged by accepting suggestions for quotes to put on the marquee.

Andrew Conarroe, the Murphy’s marketing director, said after the Murphy went dark they were looking for a way to “remind locals that we’re here.”

After doing a quick Google search, Conarroe found that other theatres were doing something similar and thought it sounded good.

“We have such a great platform to put whatever we want out there; everyone comes down Main Street,” he said.

He decided to reach out to friends and co-workers about the idea. One of the most popular suggestions was “Now Showing: No Close Encounters of the Third Kind” from Dan and Marla Stewart, members of the Murphy’s tech crew.

Dan and Marla are not only suggesting humorous things to put up — Dan actually puts them up and Marla proofreads them.

“I can be up and put two letters in backwards and they look right until I get down on the ground. Or I can leave a letter out. It’s so easy to make mistakes,” said Dan.

“Then when we started this giving campaign (#lightupthemurphy) we wanted to find all different ways people could give, whether it’s time or talent or whatever. So, we thought this is a fun way to keep people engaged, ” said Conarroe.

“We are going to have something on our marquee. We will continue it, though I don’t think we’ll have it as a contest because some people are really funny,” he said.

They want to put up quotes that are apolitical and also relevant to music or movies.

Since giving locals the opportunity to submit something, the theatre received a plethora of entries, including some odd ones.

“We’ve got some from people that may have missed the point. One guy typed up a whole page on why they should be chosen to be on the marquee. But they didn’t actually give me an entry,” he said.

In the end, he hopes this will be seen as something fun and also a distraction during these times.

If locals want to submit something for the marquee they can do so through email boxoffice@themurphytheatre.org or to Conarroe directly at andrew@themurphytheatre.org.

Dan Stewart, left, and Andrew Connarroe stand beneath Murphy Theatre’s marquee.
https://www.wnewsj.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/22/2020/08/web1_DSC_0848.jpgDan Stewart, left, and Andrew Connarroe stand beneath Murphy Theatre’s marquee. John Hamilton | News Journal
Marquee quotes humorously reflect times

By John Hamilton

jhamilton@wnewsj.com

Reach John Hamilton at 937-382-2574

Reach John Hamilton at 937-382-2574