Palladium Theater executive director Paul Wilborn not only feels responsible for his eight-member staff, but for the performers … and the audience.
“We had an incredible business going,” Wilborn said Friday on The Catalyst Sessions. “And people depended on us, not only to get paid but also for their enjoyment.
“I’ve lost one friend and heard about other folks who … this isolation has been bad. If you’re mentally shaky, this has been a terrible time. And I think entertainment is one of the things we need.”
Wilborn is over the moon – well, maybe somewhere in the vicinity of the moon is the appropriate expression, all things considered – about the Palladium’s return to live performances. The first show, with blues guitarists Jose Ramirez and Anson Funderburgh – takes place tonight (Saturday, Oct. 3).
Just 150 seats are being sold in Hough Hall, the main Palladium venue. Its capacity is 830.
The rows and seats are suitably spaced apart, as per CDC guidelines. Masks are required, and there are other safety measures in place. If anything, Palladium admins are being overly cautious.
This show, and the two that follow (on consecutive October Saturdays), are being viewed as experimental. Wilborn’s theory is that they’ll show him what he can improve on for the next go-round, which is tentatively scheduled for December.
Moving forward is, naturally, a matter of baby steps.
“If people buy one seat – and a lot of people buy one seat, or two seats – you’ve got to put six feet around them,” Wilborn commented. “And a row in front and a row behind. So it’s just a complicated little math problem.”
Monday on The Catalyst Sessions: Photographer Jim Swallow, whose exhibition of 3-D work opens next week at Soft Water Studios; he’ll be joined by Soft Water’s Carrie Jadus.
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