Congregation honors first egg-shaped Christian church after demolition
Present and former members of the First Christian Church of Oklahoma Metropolis honored the constructing after its demolition.
Carla Hinton, Oklahoma
- The outdated Jewel Field Theater was razed on October 25.
- The theater troupe had moved out of the constructing two years in the past.
- Jewel Field Theater is now within the former Trinity Faculty constructing on the identical property.
On a darkish autumn morning, a forged of Directors, actors and supporters of the Jewel Box Theater turned the viewers for an outside drama.
The group gathered early Oct. 25 to observe a Midwest Wrecking crew tear down the theater’s longtime former house, a well-recognized pink stone constructing on the First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) of the Oklahoma City property, 3700 N Walker.
Chuck Tweed, who served as the Jewel Box Theater’s production manager for more than 40 years before retiring in January 2019, spearheaded the emotional rally, guaranteeing that the demolition of the outdated Jewel Field was accompanied by larger fanfare than the surprise on September 26 shaving the distinctive egg-shaped white dome of the historic church building.
“We’re saddened by the lack of the outdated constructing. We have been saddened each time we have moved…nevertheless it was thrilling to do one thing new,” mentioned Deborah Franklin, who was not too long ago named the brand new co-CEO. from the Jewel Field Theatre. , along with her husband, Richard Lemin.
“Theater is alive and effectively…and we’re really honored to now be the folks taking cost and pushing it ahead.”
The place is the Jewel Field Theater’s new house?
OKC’s oldest community theater, Jewel Field is a ministry of First Christian-Oklahoma City. Just like the congregation, the theater moved a short distance two years ago to the former Trinity School building on church property at NW 37 and Walker Avenue.
“That they had a really massive what we jokingly referred to as a gymnasium: it was mainly a gymnasium for teenagers, however at one finish that they had this very small efficiency stage. When the congregation moved in, they took the south finish for the sanctuary, and the north finish is now mainly the Jewel Field Theater,” Lemin mentioned.
“We have about 140 seats in a push – it is not (in) the spherical just like the outdated one was – however we have had a few season and a half, nearly two seasons in there since we moved.”
What’s subsequent on the Jewel Field Theater?
Now in its off season, the Jewel Field is internet hosting just a few exhibits from different producers in its efficiency house at 321 NW 36 Road.
For Halloween weekend, Derek Kenney, the theatre’s former creative director and manufacturing supervisor, is directing an unbiased manufacturing of Oscar Wilde’s darkish and attractive story “Salomé,” with performances persevering with at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 29 and a pair of:30 p.m. Oct. 30 on the Jewel Field Theater.
C&R Home Entertainment will stage the play “FAT Don’t Crack”, written and directed by Clarence Williams Jr., at 7 p.m. November 4 and 5 on the Jewel Field.
And the Jewel Field and First Christian-Oklahoma Metropolis will collaborate on “A Christmas Cabaret” from December 16-18 on the theater.
When will Jewel Field Theater launch its sixty fifth season?
The Jewel Field dropped the curtain on its sixty fourth season in August with Don Zolidis’ comedy “An Unspeakable Triumph of Supreme Brilliance,” which bows with its annual Gem Awards on October 1.
The nonprofit neighborhood theater is shifting from its conventional fall-to-spring mannequin to a January-October schedule for its sixty fifth season, which kicks off with the Feb. 2-19 manufacturing of “A Firm of Wayward Saints.” Lemin will direct the 1966 comedy by George Herman, with auditions scheduled for November 5 and 6 and rehearsals beginning in January.
“For Jewel Field, it is actually laborious to attempt to repeat a present over the Thanksgiving vacation, then get the present began, then end it earlier than the Christmas vacation begins. … And it is laborious to compete. as a result of there’s a lot happening in the course of the vacation season,” Lemin mentioned.
“So we’ll take November-December because the low season to get the theater again in form and begin planning for the subsequent season.”
What are the exhibits within the sixty fifth season of Jewel Field?
After “A Firm of Wayward Saints”, Jewel Field will proceed its sixty fifth season from March 16 to April 2 with “Sense and Sensibility” by Jane Austen, adapted and directed by Holly McNattwhich was initially deliberate because the season opener.
The 2023 season will proceed from Might 11 to twenty-eight with Winner of the 2012 Pulitzer Prize in Drama for Quiara Alegría Hudes “Water by the Spoonful” directed by Isaiah J. Williams; June 29-July 16 with Jaston Williams, Oklahoma Joe Sears and Ed Howard’s comedy trio “Crimson, White and Tuna,” led by Adrienne Pierce with assist from Doobie Potter; and August 3-20 with Lucas Hnath’s empowering observe “The Christians,” directed by Kenney.
The sixty fifth season will conclude October 5-22 with Alfred Uhry’s 1997 Tony Award-winning play, “Ballyhoo’s Final Night time”, directed by Jamie Brewster.
What are the brand new common managers’ plans for the Jewel Field?
After main the corporate for 2 years, Kenney left the Jewel Field in September to grow to be the Lyric Theatre’s new field workplace supervisor. So Franklin and Lemin, who’ve been married for 36 years, solely not too long ago stepped in as co-CEOs of the Jewel Field.
“Jewel Field’s historical past and legacy is as neighborhood theater, and we have been requested to proceed to take action. And that is what we plan to do…and we need to be the very best neighborhood theater we could be” , mentioned Lemin.
“We need to have actors and administrators, we need to have playwrights, we need to have individuals who need to use their technical abilities. … We mainly see it as a spot for expertise growth. Hopefully in the event that they keep right here in Oklahoma Metropolis, they may proceed to work with us. And in the event that they proceed, we will likely be completely happy to say, “Hey, they debuted at the Jewel Box Theater.”
He and Franklin have a historical past with the Jewel Field that dates again a long time: They’ve labored in neighborhood theater since 1983, when Lemin directed and Franklin starred in Neil Simon’s “The Star Spangled Woman.”
The couple directed, carried out and/or wrote 35 productions there. Franklin even directed the final present within the outdated constructing of the Jewel Field Theater which was simply demolished: a end of 2019 production of Sandra Fenichel Asher’s comedy “Little Old Ladies in Tennis Shoes”.
“We have all the time had very constructive experiences on the Jewel Field: it is an actual neighborhood theater, and it is all the time been an ideal place to work. Each time you got here again to direct or play there, it was identical to you are coming house to theater,” Franklin mentioned.
“We hadn’t anticipated the chance to run the theatre; it turned out to be a very good time for us. Richard and I are each public college educators, and we each took our retired final spring. … So, we utilized, and we’re actually excited to be right here, as a result of hopefully what we are able to do is bridge the previous and the long run.”
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