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‘Catalyst Sessions’ recap: David M. Jenkins

Bill DeYoung

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Even though it seems like David Jenkins has been part of the fabric of Tampa Bay theater forever, the fact is that he and several others co-founded Jobsite Theater Company just 22 years ago. It’s the resident professional theater company at the David A. Straz Center, and it produces some of the most thrilling, cutting-edge shows in a black box that seats fewer than 100 people.

Jenkins was our guest on Friday’s edition of The Catalyst Sessions, and the freewheeling conversation covered a variety of subjects , from Jobsite’s ever-morphing creative contributions to the virtual world, to what will conceivably happen when the world gets the green light to go back to attend performances.

Jenkins as Father Flynn in the to-be-resurrected show “Doubt.” Photo: Jobsite.

“We’ve got this roughly $31,000 already invested in Doubt,” he explained. “We need to make that money back somehow. If we just cancel Doubt, we did all that work for nothing really, right? We’ve got a well-rehearsed show, we’ve got a great group of artists … the show was directed well, it looks great visually, everybody did a great job.

“With the current state of uncertainty, no one knows when people are re-opening … no one knows. And so we looked at our calendar, with the fact that we’ve got Doubt sitting in the room – with a couple of weeks’ notice, we could have that show back up.”

Acknowledging that precise planning is impossible in these difficult days, Jenkins said the most prudent thing he could do was cancel the last two scheduled shows in the Jobsite season, neither of which had been financially invested in yet.

“So that we are free and clear, from now through August, to get Doubt back up should things re-open, and people are willing in fact to go to the theater. Which is a whole different conversation.”

Monday on The Catalyst Sessions: Laura and Hank Hine

7 p.m. weekdays, Facebook Live

 

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