Month: August 2013

Lyric Top 40: Real People on the Phones

You know what’s great?
Real human interaction.

photo of Box office staff

That’s why we have real humans answering our phones in the box office. At all times when the box office is open, there is at least one person staffed on the phones. This means that on occasion, you might have to leave a message, but that actual person will call you back! Whether you need to buy a ticket, make a change, or you lost your umbrella at the theater, we’re here to help.

And so many of you have expressed surprise or delight when you hear “Thanks for calling the Lyric Stage Company!” that we couldn’t help but include it on the countdown. We like that you like that we’re available.

We want your phone calls with us to be as painless as possible, and so that’s why we’re here as much as possible to help you, solve a problem with you, and chat about the theater you’re going to see when you’re with us. So give us a call sometime – we’ll be here.

photo of Box Office staff

The Lyric Top 40
A new feature on our blog that celebrates the large and the small, the obvious and the obscure, our very favorite things about The Lyric Stage Company of Boston, the things that make us uniquely Lyric. Check back for the next item on the countdown.

One Man, Two Guvnors Rehearsal Photos

Behind rehearsal doors at One Man, Two Guvnors… slapstick ensues. Our intrepid Stage Manager and erstwhile photographer Nerys Powell caught these images as a sneak peek of what is already shaping up to be a hilarious show. We open September 6th!

photo of the cast of One Man, Two Guvnors rehearsing
Cast of One Man, Two Guvnors.
photo of Dan Whelton and John Davin
Dan Whelton & John Davin; Dan Whelton & Alejandro Simoes
photo of Davron S. Monroe and Dale Place rehearsing
Davron S. Monroe & Dale Place
Photo of Dale Place and Tiffany Chen rehearsing
Neil A. Casey, Dale Place, Tiffany Chen, & Aimee Doherty.
Photo of Neil and Dan rehearsing
Neil A. Casey & Dan Whelton

Lyric Top 40: Marathon Day at Nicholas Nickleby

“What do you mean, it’s two plays?”
When we announced in the spring of 2010 we were mounting The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby, Parts I & II in repertory, there was a lot of excitement from the theater and the audience alike. It was, after all, one of the largest productions in the history of the Lyric. We had been funded (for the first time!) by a special grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, we had a cast of 24 playing over 100 characters, an enormous set, thousands of costume pieces, and nine weeks of performances.

“We experienced an embarrassment of riches,” said Spiro Veloudos, who directed the piece, of the casting and rehearsal process. Spiro noted that he had been ruminating on directing the show(s) for almost twenty years before starting the process here. It was a powerful, relatable story; Associate Director Courtney O’Connor said, “as with any play, the strength of the story is in how we relate to it. Though the events take place in 1830’s England, parallels to our contemporary world are clear.” And it was just a huge undertaking for all of us in the Boston theater community. Cast member Will Lyman predicted just before the show opened that “Nick Nick will be a landmark in Boston theatre history.”

Needless to say, it was a big event.

And some of you wanted to see it all in one day.

We called this “running the Marathon,” because it involved seeing two three hour plays in one day. We scheduled the repertory so that you could in theory have a week or more in between seeing Part I of the show and Part II. But on five specific days throughout the run, the first part played in the afternoon and the second part in the evening so you could, if you desired, spend a day here at the Lyric with us and see it all in a day.

These days sold out unbelievably fast, and it wasn’t hard to see why: though it was a pretty hefty undertaking, absorbing and experiencing these shows all in one day was a mammoth experience. “Such a triumph,” one audience member remarked to me on their way out, “we’re so glad we did this.” The audience on those days became like a small family unto themselves. They laughed together, they cried together, there was such solidarity in the room.

photo of Brian Duddley drinking out of Nicholas Nickleby water bottle
…Nicholas Nickleby collectors items!

We thought it might be nice of us to provide water bottles for our intrepid marathon runners – because everyone knows it’s folly to run a marathon without staying hydrated! We tried to make those days as special as possible – and we knew we’d succeeded when, at the start of Part II on the first Marathon day, the audience broke into hoots and hollers, before the actors had even said a word. The show report for that evening stated, “There was applause for getting into place at the very top of the show for the narration and the audience loved it.  Pretty much the entire house was on its feet at the curtain call.”

The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby poster

Truthfully, though, whether you “ran the Nickleby marathon,” saw the shows weeks apart, or even just one of the two parts, we hope you look back on it fondly. We sure do.


The Lyric Top 40
A new feature on our blog that celebrates the large and the small, the obvious and the obscure, our very favorite things about The Lyric Stage Company of Boston, the things that make us uniquely Lyric. Check back for the next item on the countdown.

Lyric Top 40: #40, Don’t Say Anything

The Lyric Top 40
You may have heard that we are celebrating a pretty important milestone in our history over here at The Lyric Stage this year: we’re celebrating 40 years of bringing Boston audiences exciting, innovative, and enriching theater.

Forty years is a long time, and we know a lot of you out there have been with us for a whole lot of those years, and some of you have just joined us recently. We think that’s awesome: that we have so many people who care about the Lyric and love things about the Lyric. A lot of really cool things have happened here, and continue to happen here, and we want to take some time to really acknowledge where we’ve been, where we are, and where we’re going.

And so we introduce you to the Lyric Top 40, a new feature on our blog that celebrates the large and the small, the obvious and the obscure, our very favorite things about The Lyric Stage Company of Boston, the things that make us uniquely Lyric.

Without further adieu, the Lyric Top 40.

#40: The fact that you can probably finish this sentence: “If you enjoy what you see on stage this evening, be sure to go home and tell somebody. If you don’t…”

How many of us have sat in the audience during the brief pre-show speech waiting for this line? Laugh, chuckle, or smirk-inducing as it may be, we know that most of you folks who have joined us more than once in seasons past know to expect this line, and you know it’s almost always coming. We hope that by now its tongue-in-cheeky nature brings a smile to your face. Some of you have even started to say the punchline along with us. We won’t comment on how we feel about that.

What we do hope is that you really hear the message behind the punchline: we’re so glad to have you, and we’re so glad you enjoy talking with us before the show and during intermission. The best parts of our day come when we get to hear you talk about the play and your reactions to it. You’re our family and that means we love the intelligent, thoughtful conversations we have with you about the work we’re doing on and off stage.

So keep talking: be Lyric Stage ambassadors! If a show means something to you, if you’re still thinking about it the next morning, or if you simply laughed til you cried, we want you to share that meaning, thought, or joy with a friend. Tell them we’re here – tell them what we’re doing. You are our audience, our community, and we need you to help make that community bigger and better for the next 40 years, and add more and more voices to the conversation.

The next time you’re here at the Lyric and that curtain speech starts up, sit tight in your seat, open your ears, and take it to heart: be sure to go home and tell somebody if you enjoy the show. In fact, tell multiple somebodies. Tell everyone you know! And if you don’t?

Don’t say anything.

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