Tuesday, February 21, 2012


My friend's husband, David, is a professor of theater arts at Cameron University. He is retiring this year and has just finished his last production at Cameron as a faculty member. You might have guessed the play was Tartuffe.

When Susanna told me that David was doing Tartuffe as his last show, I told her that Tartuffe was the first college production I ever saw, probably in 1969, when I was going to Stanislaus State College in Turlock, California (I am not making this up). My dear friend, Tommy DeGomez, (Tommy, are you out there somewhere?) played one of the parts. Tartuffe was once a first and now it's a last. I would've gone no matter what the play.

I messed around not knowing which performance to attend, when all of the sudden it was the last performance day. It was Sunday and no one answered at the ticket office. Without reserved tickets, my daughter and I headed to Cameron hoping for the best. When we got to the ticket window we were told that there were no more tickets but we could be on the waiting list. If the reserved tickets were not claimed by 5 minutes before showtime, then they would be sold to those on waiting list.

It was kind of exciting waiting for the time to pass, hoping no one else would claim their tickets. Then when they started calling names of people to come up and get tickets, it was like waiting to hear if you'd won the lottery. When I heard my name, I did a little victory dance on the way to the ticket window and then found out they didn't take credit or debit cards and the lady didn't want to make change for my $50 bill. But she did and we got in.

It was a good, solid, theater-in-the-round college production. The audience was eclectic with college professors and kids from Job Corps, teenagers and retirees, ladies in pearls and kids in jeans. We all stood at the end for one final standing O, watched as students and friends bid Dr. Fennema adieu and then a 70 something women in front of me put the icing on the cake with her final comment, "I think it's the 18th century wordology that just exhausts me."


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