Theater offers escape

Published 11:34 am Thursday, April 2, 2009

As the plush red curtains drew back at Virginia Samford Theater on a chilly February night, I found myself swept into the world of Cinderella.

The tethered clothing couldn’t mask the grace with which she danced. Fairies tip-toed across the stage in a magical display of the seasons. And, oh, who could forget the hilarious antics and movements of the ‘step-sisters’?

The performing arts offer us the perfect form of escapism.

Regardless of your day, performances such as these take you away from reality.

If you don’t believe me, believe Shelby County Arts Council founder Terri Sullivan. Sullivan said the arts make a person whole.

“I think it expands their mindset,” Sullivan said. “It adds more flavor to their life.”

Yet, the arts currently face the tough reality of dwindling audiences. Numbers decline, yet these organizations reach out further to keep us coming in.

You might offer money as an excuse for not partaking in the arts. Yet, I didn’t pay $55 for my second row seat to Cinderella — I paid $10.

This weekend Shelby County residents would exclusively pay just $20 for Twyla Tharp’s “Nine Sinatra Songs.” We pay that much for movies and a bag of popcorn. Trust me, this is much more entertaining.

The Alabama Symphony Orchestra presents their masterpieces right in our backyard. Next month American folk artist Bobby Horton of Three on a String and Maestro Christopher Confessore plan to bring their program “The Great American Symphony” to the University of Montevallo.

This is just a minute sampling of what is made available to us all. You have South City Theater, the Main Street Players in Montevallo and the Shelby Arts Council’s own Missoula Theater this summer.

The rich, artistic world screams for Shelby County to pay attention. Plop down in a comfy theater chair and escape!