WILMINGTON — The State of Ohio’s announcement lifting pandemic-related restrictions came too late for Wilmington College/Community Summer Theatre to plan accordingly for a July production this year. Patrons of what has been described as a “community treasure” will have to wait until next July for the annual summer show.
Securing the performance rights to popular productions can be a protracted process that often starts months before rehearsals and show dates. That time frame, coupled with a perception that some closely associated to summer theatre might not be comfortable returning to large gatherings, led to a second consecutive summer without a Wilmington College/Community Summer Theatre production.
“We know this is not welcome news, but we want our first show back in the theatre to be one where we can plan thoroughly and ‘pull out all the stops’ to give the audiences the same quality production they have come to expect over the last (almost) 50 years,” noted a statement issued by the WCCST production staff.
“We also know that many in our community consider the Heiland Theatre a place where many cherished memories were made, a ‘home away from home.’ We want to be sure that our audience members, performers, musicians and technicians all feel safe in this place,” the statement continued. “We understand it may take a little time to get back to normal.”
WC’s Heiland Theatre will not be completely dark this summer as the College expects to be able to do what it could not last summer — use the monies “so generously donated to WCCST” to upgrade outdated technical equipment. Due to COVID-19, the theatre was unable to complete upgrades last summer.
“As always, we greatly appreciate the community’s support for our Summer Theatre program. We are all disappointed that we have not been able to be together this past year, but we look forward with hope for what the future holds for our theatre, our College and our community.”