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(One side note before I begin.  I have added a page a the top of the blog for movie reviews.  I’ll give my thoughts on films I’ve seen here.  The inaugural review is for “District 9.”)

As I have stated in several places on this blog, I am a movie buff.  My adoration for cinema ranges from old black & whites to modern CGI effects, from the deeply dramatic to the darkly hilarious.  I also am a fan of the theater, and partake of the stage as often as a show that sounds interesting presents itself in a venue and at a price that match up with my situation.

When I moved to Hershey, I never expected to find a place that would allow me to indulge both of these loves in the same building: The Hershey Theatre.

The Herhshey Theatre, for those unfamiliar, was built by Milton S. Hershey in 1933 after he and his wife had vacationed in Venice, Italy.  The entire interior of the theatre is a magnificently crafted panorama of italian lava rock, marble, and mosaic that is truly breathtaking to behold.

I have had the privilege to attend several productions at the theatre, running the gamut from “Avenue Q” to “Movin’ Out” to “Fosse.”  In addition the theatre has a classic film series each year.  Through this series I have been able to see some of my favorite classics like “Casablanca,” “Harvey,” and “The Maltese Falcon” on the big screen.  The combination of the classic entertainment and the breathtaking setting make for an unforgettable experience no matter how often I return.

A few days ago I popped out to their website to see if this season’s classic film series had been announced.  Overall I am ecstatic with this year’s crop which includes “Breakfast at Tiffany’s,” “The Greatest Story Ever Told,” and Errol Flynn’s “Robin Hood.”  However, I am disheartened a bit by the selection of “The Rocky Horror Picture Show.”

Now,let me preface this by saying I am not a prude.  The film does not in any way offend me.  I am, in fact, a fan.  I love the movie, and have had an opportunity once or twice to attend screenings with the full audience participation.  This is actually what cause my discomfort.  I have seen what a theater looks like after a showing of “Rocky Horror,” and the idea of the Hershey Theatre, with its crushed velvet seats, beautiful mosaics, and marble floors, being subjected to such treatment makes me want to cry.

I tried to console myself by thinking they were not going to be doing the audience participation, but, lo and behold, for an extra couple dollars per ticket you can get your audience participation props right from the theatre.  Their only caveat is “no organic outside props will be permitted.” Even if this is fully enforced,which I imagine every attempt will be made but someone will at least try to sneak something in, the mess in the theatre is going to be incredible.

It somehow doesn’t seem right to have such a thing happen to such a beautiful and historic place.

I only hope that this doesn’t become a catastrophe.  I’ll pray for the cleanup crew.

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One Comment

  1. I am so with you on this – I think what the greedy HERCO is doing is a travesty! Although they have gotten some good acts in there – watching a group of “punks” come in for a concert and get cozy in their seats with their feet up on the chairs just makes me want to cry. If this is what it takes to keep the theatre up and running maybe it doors should have been closed while it was still The Majestic.


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