Out & About

Douglass Theatre’s downtown presence blossoming

Currently underway at the Douglass Theatre is the Music Legends Film Series, featuring a series of biopics paying tribute to musical greats.

We’ve already missed “Purple Rain” and “Nina,” but still to come are “Miles Ahead” (about Miles Davis, natch) and “Born to Be Blue” (Chet Baker).

Douglass director Gina Ward also wants people to see the Douglass’ new cinematic equipment: a 4-D digital projector, new screen and upgraded sound system. While the Metropolitan Opera HD series is over for the summer, and there’s no current activity from Britain’s National Theatre, the Douglass’ calendar continues to stay busy.

It seems like just yesterday that a group known as the Broadway Arts Alliance was struggling with an indifferent Macon City Council to get the historic theater restored. Well, Broadway is partially gone and the City Council is completely gone, but the beautifully restored Douglass is once again home to some of the best entertainment in town, a monument to what a handful of committed believers can do.

Season preview

All over the midstate theater seasons are coming to a close. Many of the college students already have left town, but the community theaters are whetting our appetites for the season to come.

Saturday night will see Theatre Macon’s annual Preview Party. The Cherry Street group is promising “significant system upgrades” for this digital age. Let’s hope they don’t tamper with the Youth Actors Company, a tremendous investment in our future and a source of superb performances.

Meanwhile, several theaters are presenting their final shows of the current season. Macon Little Theatre’s production of “Hotbed Hotel” is entering its final weekend, but we’ve got more time with “Steel Magnolias” by the Backlot Platers in Forsyth and “On Golden Pond” at Warner Robins Little Theatre. This poignant look at the passage of time is directed by Fred Hardin. Hardin hasn’t directed in a few years, but he is practically “an institution” in Houston County.

Honoring the great ones

Those who missed the Macon Symphony Orchestra’s closing performance on April 30 not only missed Betty Cantrell (current Miss America and former Mercerian) and the Mercer University Children’s Choir, they missed the honoring of two men who played gigantic roles in the success of the MSO: Bob Barnette and Don Rosen.

On the program was “The Typewriter.” While Barnette was legendary as a musician, I wonder if the MSO leadership realizes that Rosen also had been a performer. Yes, on “The Typewriter.” Look it up!

Contact Larry Fennelly at LarryFennelly@avantguild.com.