Picture this: it’s a Friday night. You and your friends are free, and you’re looking for something to do. Scouring through Facebook, you see that there’s a production of the musical "Anything Goes" playing at a nearby theatre. Now, you live in a small town, so this wouldn’t be like one of those fancy Broadway shows or local tours you’d see in a larger city. You think for a moment. It sounds like it could be fun, but you aren’t sure if you want to go. Maybe you don’t know a lot about musicals, or you don’t know anyone in the cast, but something is saying that you might be better off finding something else to do.
Thankfully for you, I have come up with a few reasons why you should ignore the voice in your head and go see the show!
1. You’re fueling the dreams of aspiring thespians.
As someone who’s (I’m assuming) up to date on pop culture, you probably know who Lin-Manuel Miranda and/or Idina Menzel are. This is probably the case if you pay attention to Disney movies. Try and think about where they came from, though. They didn’t just become successful overnight for working with Disney. They spent years working with smaller theatre productions before they became well known for their Broadway accolades, and later their roles with Disney. Like the actors or directors behind the small town show you’re thinking of seeing, they had a dream that they worked hard for and strived to achieve. Go see that local production, and you might see a future Broadway (or Disney) star before your very eyes!
2. Theatres are full of culture!
In my small community, there are three major venues that promote theatre, with a few smaller stages scattered throughout the county. Many of them have been around for years, and as a result are full of history that has always amazed me. Even the groups that put on the productions themselves show a bit of history by showing posters from former productions in the lobby or (in the case of many high school drama groups) having alumni to the program come back and help with the current show.
If the history of the area itself doesn’t entice you, think about the shows themselves! Many of them are historical and will teach you something about a certain time period. Others talk about current events and will give you an insight about issues that are commonly faced today, such as mental health. It’s perfect if you’re a history and culture nerd like me!
3. You’re giving back to the community.
As someone who has spent most of her life in a small town, I know how important it is to make this last point. The money you spend on tickets doesn’t just get thrown to some charity, it often goes into the funding for future productions. Your contribution could potentially go towards the funding for a set for a bigger show, or for puppets for a kid’s show. Filling those seats is important in order to keep the theatre scene thriving in smaller communities!
Now, let’s go back to my scenario from the beginning. You’re contemplating whether or not to see "Anything Goes" tonight, but something’s telling you no. Now, however, you’re armed with the information I have given you, and you have good reason to call your friends and ask them to tag along. Do you ignore the voice in your head, or do you listen to it and do something that’s not quite as exciting?