Newsletter – 07/26/2020

Dear Strand Fan, 

The Summer Movie Series continues this week!

SMOKEY and the BANDIT (1977)


July 28, 2020

Gates open at 6:00pm, Movie at Dusk

Once again the Skyline has stepped up to help the Strand.  They are allowing us to use their facility to show our July movie SMOKEY and the BANDIT.    It will be a fun night.   This month we have a fantastic raffle prize package.   This was the brainchild of Strand volunteer Kurtis B.   He also donated all the items.   This package includes everything from Moonpies to a vinyl album of the soundtrack.   Thank you Kurtis!   

In addition to the movie Joey G. has put together a reel (yes projected in 35mm) of Burt Reynolds trailers.  It is about 2000’ and will show before the feature.   We hope you can make it to this fun movie.  The Skyline concessions are fantastic.  We will all be there and looking forward to seeing you!  

The Strand Theatre has made the difficult decision to cancel this week’s performance of Little Shop of Horrors.   This decision was made after consultation with the Shelby County Health Department and the artistic team from the Ricks-Weil Theater Company.    The new mask mandate taking effect on July 27th presented a hurdle we could not overcome.

The Strand has two guiding principles for our physical theater:   Audience Safety and Audience Comfort.    The Strand’s board felt that it would be difficult to accomplish either goal.

The performance of Little Shop of Horrors would have been a breath of fresh air in the stark live performance scene.    We hope to partner with the Ricks-Weil to bring this performance to the Strand’s stage in the future.

The harsh reality of the pandemic has more than set in.     We are sad to see the Strand sit ideal.   You know us, we can’t let a little thing like a pandemic stand in the way.   There are always opportunities that present themselves.   The light bulb went off in our heads…since the Strand is closed, the stage is clear, let’s do some work!

We have one major project that previously could only be accomplished with contractors. That is because there is not enough time in January because of the scope of the work.  As you know we close in January to do major projects.  This project is something we are capable of doing, just not that quickly.   Now that the pandemic has changed the rules of the game, we have all the time in the world.  

The project is something that is going to make every performer jump up and down for joy.   We are lowering the back part of the stage (upstage) to be the same level as the rest of the stage.   No step!     This has been a hindrance since we re-opened.   It isn’t a hard job, just tedious.   We have the time, so we will do it.    There will be a call for volunteers in the next few weeks and work sessions will start.   We will use safe health practices and social distancing.  

This will be the single biggest performance improvement since we started.    The part of the stage that will be lowered is our original 1916 vaudeville stage.   To make matters worse, it is raked, or slanted.    We are saving all the original flooring, but when done it will be flat, safe, and usable.  We used part of that floor to make our boardroom table.  We know it is beautiful wood, just covered with years of paint and dirt.   

While we are at it we are going to continue work in other parts of the theater as well.   Being in the Strand will be a blessing.    We hope you can join the fun.

We have no events scheduled at the Strand, but still have our final Summer Film Series movie ANIMAL HOUSE at the Skyline on August 25.   You will see some popcorn sales pop up in the next few weeks too.

Thank you for the support.   See you at the…Skyline!