“Standing Room Only” (SRO) are three words dear to the heart of a Broadway producer.
Why? SRO, in the parlance of Broadway’s theater crowd, signifies a hit of major proportions. A complete sellout! And while St. Mark’s Episcopal parish hall on Marco Island isn’t Broadway, that is exactly the kind of thing that happened recently when The Marco Players (TMP) presented The Troubadours in concert to raise funds for the Chuck Daye Apprentice Program: a SRO house. So many were the raves and cheers for a repeat, that TMP board promptly declared the event to be an annual one. Announcing the news, Beverly Dahlstrom, TMP president, said, “To say that we’re all delighted would be to put it mildly. But this happy success is also a challenge. It means that we have to keep the pressure on during the next twelve months so that can come up with another winner.”
Ms. Dahlstrom had high praise for The Troubadours, who are directed and conducted by Dr. Ronald Doiron. “The Troubadours are one of the best singing groups of their kind in our part of Southwestern Florida,” she said, “and Dr. Doiron knows how to get the best from them. He interacted so marvelously with our audience of 200, and, wow! I think he could make a piano talk. They brought the best of Broadway to Marco in grand style.” Ms. Dahlstrom also announced that The Troubadours would be featured at the 2011 event to benefit the Chuck Daye Apprentice Program.
Touched and grateful, Judy Daye, whose husband died last July and has become an icon to The Marco Players, said, “Chuck loved The Marco Players like family. He was always willing to advance the reputation and quality of this wonderful community theater group. As all those who worked with Chuck can verify, he didn’t have the kind of vanity that seeks praise. He just quietly and expertly did every job that needed doing – from acting to construction. To make this event bearing his name an annual one is something that would have nonplussed him, and makes me eternally grateful to all concerned.”
Describing the Chuck Daye Apprentice Program, which is set to begin in the Fall of 2010, Ms. Dahlstrom said, “This program aspires to forge a link between school-age children and the Players. Apprentices will have an opportunity to receive a general schooling in the theater arts from skilled and experienced theater people. They learn will about not just about performing, but also other theater essentials: producing, directing, stage managing, set construction, lighting, and front office duties. We’re enthusiastic, of course, because this will be a valuable resource for young people who are attracted to the theater.”
The Marco Players next play, “The Fourth Wall,” by A.R. Gurney, will open on April 7th and run through April 25th. Variety, long considered “the bible of show business,” said the play “moves along quickly with nary a wasted word…but the real fun…comes as his characters and audience respond to the fourth wall in front of them.” Tickets may be purchased on-line at www.themarcoplayers.com – at the Marco Players Theater box office, Wednesdays from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. or by calling 239-642-7270. Major credit cards are accepted.