Regional Spotlight: How Hale Center Theater Orem is Working Through The Global Health Crisis
Now more than ever it is important to support theater and do our part to keep the art form that we love so much alive and as thriving as it can be during these unprecedented times. While the global health crisis has temporarily put the theater world on hold, pausing all live performances and large gatherings to help stop the spread of COVID-19, theaters around the country have taken a hit. During this time of adjusting to our temporary new normal, theaters are figuring out how to take care of their team, and discovering the best ways to virtually bring theater to audiences.
Through our regional theater interview series, we are checking in with theaters all around the country, talking to them about how they are handling these difficult circumstances, learning what they are doing to move forward, and discovering the best way for people to help regional theaters during this time.
Today we shine a spotlight on Orem, Utah's Hale Center Theater Orem.
First of all, I want to check in on the health and well-being of everyone at Hale Center Theater Orem. How is everyone doing during this difficult time?
We are all staying healthy and doing well. Luckily we haven't had anyone get sick, and we've been quarantined from work since before it was a government mandate. The health and safety of our staff was our priority from the get-go, and we're lucky to have a staff that is able to stay so productive while staying distanced!
What do the days look like right now for those who work at Hale Center Theater Orem?
Right now our days consist of a lot of meetings. We have regular production, and departmental meetings to make sure everyone is staying on the same page, staying healthy and safe, and working as hard as we can to be prepared and react to the most up-to-date information we're receiving. Our designers and production staff are still hard at work preparing the remainder of our 2020 season, and planning for 2021.
How much planning is going on both short term and long term for the theater? I would like to hear about the immediate plans for the theater, it's upcoming productions etc., and what the theater is hoping/planning for in future months.
Our most immediate work all revolves around our streaming performances. Currently we are offering shows via streaming every weekend, Friday through Sunday, as part of our Hale@Home events. Hale@Home is our way of ensuring that people know there are still good things happening in the theater community. We are lucky to have a lot of high quality archival footage of shows we've done in the past, as well as the ability to remotely produce small cast shows, like our streaming performance of Pirates of Penzance: A Two Man Show.
Tickets for all of our streaming shows are available at:
Unfortunately, we had to cancel our planned production of Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, and have moved that show to our 2021 season, the rest of which will be announced soon. As for the rest of our 2020 season, we have our production of Matilda on hold to return as soon as we are able to have audiences again. We're planning on running Matilda, which had to close halfway through its run, so that our audiences that were planning on attending, or who already had tickets, will still have that opportunity. The rest of our season is still up in the air. Our intent is to produce the remainder of the season as planned, but we can only function of the newest and best information we receive, so we won't be making announcements about the rest of 2020 until we are able to make a concrete plan.
We just want our patrons to know that we are here, and working hard, and doing everything we can to make sure that we are bringing them the best theatrical experience now, when we are able to open again, and for years to come.
Do you have plans to bring any previously filmed productions/upcoming events/classes etc. online?
We're thrilled to bring several of our past productions back via Hale@Home. We have already streamed our productions of The Velveteen Rabbit (2018), and As You Like It (2009), and we will be streaming Thank You Papa (1990 - our second ever production at HCTO, written by Grandma and Grandpa Ruth and Nathan Hale), and April Ann (another show written by Grandma and Grandpa, performed in 2010). Our academy is also still up and running online. We are accepting new voice and acting students, and still hold classes remotely.
Information for our online classes is available at:
What is the best way for people to help Hale Center Theater Orem right now?
The best way to support Hale Center Theater Orem right now is by purchasing tickets to our streaming productions, purchasing gift certificates for future productions at the theater, and through donations. We've received the most incredible generosity from the community, and these methods of support will ensure that we're able to continue to create the best theatrical experience possible for years to come.