Those Were the Days
Directly after graduating from high school, I went to work as musical director for a theater in Golden, Colorado. For those of you who think life upon the wicked stage isn’t a “real” job, see how long you last rehearsing 40 hours a week, and doing nine shows a week, except for December, when we did 10. If I worked less than 70 hours a week it felt like I was on vacation.
Shortly before I started work there, they had opened a second theater—the Goldenrod Showboat in St. Louis—“the oldest surviving authentic showboat on the Mississippi.” Built in 1909 by the Pope Dock Company of Parkersburg, West Virginia, the Goldenrod was the inspiration for Edna Ferber’s novel Show Boat.
Two years later I became musical director for both theaters, and spent the next five years rehearsing for three weeks in Golden, loading the RV with sets and costumes, driving across Kansas, rehearsing three weeks in St. Louis, packing the RV, driving back to Golden, and starting the cycle over again.
These weren’t “book” musicals either. We built our reputation on melodrama and a late-twentieth century version of vaudeville. I was adapting old melodramas, injecting them with topical humor, arranging the musical numbers, and writing most of the comedy sketches. And you know what? I loved this job! Sure, it was hectic, the days were long, and I frequently found myself working into the wee hours, but talk about racking up experience fast! I was cranking out 18 shows a year, and somehow still found time to arrange for other theaters around the country. I also had the pleasure of working with some extraordinarily talented actors and musicians. Several of them went on to work on Broadway, TV, and in film—but I’ll save those stories for another column.
Both theaters are gone now. The Golden location was bulldozed for “luxury townhouses with a spectacular view of the Denver skyline,” and the Goldenrod died a slow, agonizing death. Gone, but never forgotten.
For those of you keeping score—summer is dwindling away. It’s more than half over. We’re in the third quarter. The clock is ticking. So, for those of you who keep saying, “Don’t worry! We have plenty of time to (fill in the blank).” Guess what? You don’t. As the old song says, “Enjoy yourself! It’s later than you think.” Grab your calendar, read this column, and write down the things you want to do this summer before it’s too late. And use a pen. All locations are Rehoboth Beach unless otherwise noted. ▼
CAMP Rehoboth Puts Art at The Heart of Our Community
At the Camp Rehoboth Gallery
By The Sea and Beyond
You have but a few precious days to get to the CAMP Rehoboth Gallery and see the artwork of talented locals Donna Deely and Richard Thibodeau.
Both of these talented artists have created sea-themed work with everything from oysters to mermaids. The exhibit closes July 31.
The Rehoboth Beach Bears Weekend is a scant two months away, and CAMP Rehoboth is looking for artists to submit artwork depicting the bear/cub community for display and sale for Honey Pot! The Sweet and Sticky Lives of Bears—in conjunction with the Bear Weekend. The deadline for submissions is August 4, and you’ll find the requirements for the show at: camprehoboth.com/programs/camp-rehoboth-arts. ▼
CAMP Rehoboth Gallery Hours:
9 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday
9 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday | 10 a.m-4 p.m. Sunday
Design and Make Your Own Ring With Local Artist
The Heidi Lowe Gallery, nestled in the trees at 328 Rehoboth Avenue, has a great summer deal going.
The gallery is hosting a Make Your Own Ring class, every Wednesday morning through August. Sign up for the two-hour class and work from 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. on a personal creation.
The class costs only $100, which includes all the materials, instruction, and a finished silver ring for you. The class requires a minimum of four people to be held, with a maximum of eight. It’s a cool activity for a group of friends or family.
You can register (at least one week in advance) on the Heidi Lowe website at heidilowejewelry.com. Jewelry-making is a fun way to be creative in a stress-free environment. Each class is taught with beginners in mind as students learn basic metalsmithing techniques including sawing, hammering, soldering, filing, sanding, and finishing.
For more information call the gallery at 302-227-9203. ▼
CAMP Rehoboth (37 Baltimore Avenue; 302-227-5620; camprehoboth.com) is hosting auditions August 6-8 (7 p.m.) for It’s Complicated 3.0—three one-act plays with LGBTQ themes to be performed November 1-3. Auditions are a short interview and a cold reading with director Russell Stiles. Can’t make the auditions? Contact Russell: 814-935-8821.
CAMP Rehoboth Chorus (37 Baltimore Avenue; 302-227-5620; camprehoboth.com) features their 24-voice ensemble in Bad Boys/Bad Girls—an evening of greed, lust, murder, treachery, corruption, and adultery—all those things we hold near and dear to our hearts. September 28 at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Southern Delaware (30486 Lewes-Georgetown Highway).
Cinema Art Theater (17701 Dartmouth Drive, Lewes; 302-313-4032) screens new independent films through the Rehoboth Beach Film Society. Try “Food & Film Wednesdays.” Attend the 4 p.m. screening for $8, and have dinner at Lefty’s Alley & Eats for $10. Ticket sales are open for the 2019-2020 Met season. Check their website for films and show times.
Clear Space Theatre Company (20 Baltimore Avenue; 302-227-2270) has Mamma Mia!, Hello, Dolly!, and The Wedding Singer—running Monday-Saturday through Labor Day weekend. Children’s Theatre every Saturday morning (11 a.m.), and the LateR Night Show on select Saturday nights after the mainstage show. The Well-Strung Quartet returns for two shows on July 28. Check out their summer camps for your kids or grandkids.
Dickens Parlour Theatre (35715 Atlantic Avenue, Millville; 302-829-1071) offers magic and comedy in an intimate setting. July 26-30: Bruce Gold; July 31-August 6: Ran’d Shine; Randy Forester: through August 29; Rich Bloch: August 2-17; and running six nights a week through September 1—The Comedy Show Tonight.
Freeman Stage (31750 Lake View Drive, Selbyville; 800-840-9227) offers these July events: 27: Mike Delguidice & Big Shot (Billy Joel tribute); 28: St. Paul and the Broken Bones with Yola; 29: Ben Folds and Violent Femmes; 30: Steve Miller Band & Marty Stuart; 31: John Butler Trio with Trevor Hall. August events: 1: Gary Allegretto; 2: ABBA, the Concert; 3: Gavin DeGraw; 4: Kool and the Gang; 6: Lyle Lovett and his Large Band; 8: The Great Dubois; 9: Locals Under the Lights; 10: The Bronx Wanderers; 11: Bryan Setzer’s Rockabilly Riot! Check their website for details.
The Milton Theater (110 Union St., Milton; 302-684-3038) “keeps Milton weird!” July events: 27: David Bowie Tribute Band; 28: Ottawa Valley—Celtic music. August events: 2: Eric Anthony Lopez (Phantom of the Opera); 3: Joan Rivers and Friends with Holly Faris; 9: Men in Motion (18+); 10: Beatlemania Now; 11: The Waterman’s Daughter and Naked Blue. Check their website for details.
Rehoboth Beach Bandstand (Rehoboth Avenue at the Boardwalk) hosts these July concerts: 26: Lower Case Blues; 27: 70s Flashback Band; 28: Indian River; and these August concerts: 2: High Noon; 3: US Navy Band Sea Chanters; 4: Billy Price Charm City Rhythm Band; 9: Petty Coat Junction (Tom Petty tribute); 10: Jimi Smooth Band; 11: Jimmie’s 80s Flashback Band. All concerts begin at 8 p.m.
Rehoboth Summer Children’s Theatre (in residence at Epworth UMC; 19285 Holland Glade Rd.; 302-227-6766) presents The Jungle Book, The Wizard of Oz, and Alice in Wonderland. Theatre and film/TV camps through August 23.
Second Street Players (2 South Walnut Street, Milford; 302-422-0220/800-838-3006) opens Happy Days—a New Musical. Through July 28, in their newly-renovated theater.
Stango Park Concerts (corner of Kings Highway & Adams Street, Lewes) presented every Tuesday evening at 7 p.m. July 30: The Hit Time Revue; August 6: Tydewater Band—Pure Country; 13: US Navy Band—The Commodores (brass band). Bring a blanket or a beach chair! Rain location: Cape Henlopen High.
GALLERIES & MUSEUMS
Abraxas Studio of Art (515 Federal Street, Lewes; 302-645-9119) features the oil portraits and landscape paintings of Abraxas.
The Back Porch Café (59 Rehoboth Avenue; 302-227-3674; rodcook.us) presents New Work 2019 by Rodney Cook—through August 14.
The Brush Factory on Kings (830 Kings Highway, Lewes; 302-745-2229) houses a co-op of 50 local artisans and merchants.
CAMP Rehoboth Gallery (37 Baltimore Avenue; 302-227-5620) See listing elsewhere in this column.
Cape Artists Gallery (110 W. 3rd Street, Lewes; 302-644-7733) is a half block from the Zwaanendael Museum and features the work of two dozen artists, with much of their art focused on beach scenes.
Delaware Art Gallery (239 Rehoboth Avenue; 302-853-5099) offers new and classic Delaware photographs by Kevin Fleming.
Gallery 37 (8 South Walnut Street, Milford; 302-265-2318) represents over 45 artists and artisans from around the country with fine art, wood-turned vessels, fibers, glass art, and more.
Gallery 50 (50 Wilmington Avenue; 302-227-2050) in addition to original paintings, jewelry, glass, sculpture, ceramics, and mixed media, they currently feature Photography by Bruce Clayton—through August 8. Opening August 9: Rae Hamilton—seascape, landscape, farm life oils—through August 29.
Heidi Lowe Gallery (328 Rehoboth Avenue; 302-227-9203) presents Enlightenment — a classically inspired exhibition of works by Philadelphia-based artist Stacey Lee Webber, July 6-28.
Peninsula Gallery (520 E. Savannah Road, Lewes; 302-645-0551) offers over 3,000 square feet of display and custom framing. August 3-31: Coastal Camera Club Juried Exhibition. Opening reception: August 3 (5-7p.m.).
Rehoboth Art League (12 Dodds Lane, Henlopen Acres; 302-227-8408) opens three new exhibitions: 81st Annual Members’ Fine Art Exhibition (July 26-September 1); Ethereal Ireland—works by Beth Trepper (July 26-September 1); and Rehoboth Dreaming—Juried Members’ Showcase (July 31-October 20). Check their website for their class offerings.
Rehoboth Beach Museum (511 Rehoboth Avenue at the Canal, 302-227-7310) has fresh exhibits on their renovated second floor for you to enjoy, and lots of Rehoboth Beach history on the first floor. The 14th Annual Rehoboth Beach Ball will be at Kings Creek Country Club—August 3. Check the calendar on their website for walking tours and special events.
Tideline Gallery (111 Rehoboth Avenue; 302-227-4444) offers unique gifts, Judaica, jewelry, pottery, lamps, and art glass.
Ward Ellinger Gallery (CAMP Rehoboth Courtyard, 39 Baltimore Avenue; 302-227-2710) features art in different mediums by abstract expressionist Ward Ellinger and Sondra N. Arkin. ▼
Doug is the Artistic & Musical Director for CAMP Rehoboth Chorus, Director of Music Ministries at Epworth UMC, and co-founder and Artistic Director emeritus of the Clear Space Theater Company. Contact Doug at email@example.com if you want to add your events to the calendar. Check out CAMP Arts on our website at camprehoboth.com for links to all the listed theatres, galleries and museums.