WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — More places are temporarily shutting down operations every day due to COVID-19. Here in Wichita Falls, two local theaters are cancelling or postponing shows to help prevent the virus from spreading in this community.
President and CEO of the Wichita Theatre DeWayne Jackson met with members of the theater to discuss next steps in the quarantined world.
“So we’re just trying to kick around some ideas about what the rest of the year might look like and what are we going to do in the middle of all of this and what can we do on social media to maybe lighten the load a little bit with our community,” Jackson said.
Backdoor Theatre canceled their closing weekend shows of Oliver and artistic director Michael Sherry sees the end game in all of this.
“Not hoping, we want to know we’ll be here tomorrow and the day after that so it’s about survival and the end game and if it takes us up to a couple of days to put a plan in action, we’re going to do that but it’s going to be what’s best for this community and the longevity of this organization,” Sherry said.
As shows are postponed at both theaters for the time being, parents like Blake Davis can only help practice lines for now.
“This time is toughest on my daughter, she just got cast as one of the bigger parts in Moana and they are now, don’t know how long they are going to delay it,” Davis said. “So she’s just chomping at the bit and she’s already read the whole script and nearly memorized it and is just ready to go.”
The Wichita Theatre hopes to be back up and running by April 17th at the earliest, but are preparing for all scenarios.
“If we had to postpone until the fall, we have a number of cast members that we’d lose because they’re headed off college and there may be some adults that have other activities that they’re involved in that might take them away on weekends,” Jackson said.
In the end, both theaters are in wait and see mode, ready for the next time they can open the curtains for the community again.
“At the end of all this madness, we want to offer hope and we’ve been here doing shows to entertain the community for over 50 years now and i hope we can welcome the community back with open arms to the theater we love in the heart of downtown after this is all over and done with,” Sherry said.
Once over and done with, as Sherry said, the show must go on.