Photo: Carol Rosegg
In the performing arts world it is almost canon law that the show must go on. For the cast and crew of Ford’s Theatre’s The Laramie Project that meant finding a performance space for their production after Tuesday’s Government Shutdown resulted in the National Parks Service forcing the closure the famed theatre.
I learned about the events of that faithful day in an interview with Paul R. Tetreault, the Theatre Director for Ford’s Theatre. The staff arrived to work at 8:30 unsure on how the Shutdown would affect their production. In past government closures the theatre has been allowed to produce theatrical productions. This production of The Laramie Project doesn’t use any federal employees or funds, however the theatre facility is funded by both the Ford’s Theatre Society, a nonprofit entity, and the National Parks Service.
“We thought we’d be beneath the radar… the Federal government has bigger issues than little ol’ Fords Theatre.” Tetreault explained.
At 10:30 that morning Tetreault was hand-delivered a letter from the Director of the National Parks Service informing them that the facility will be closed for the duration of the shutdown. Suddenly The Laramie Project was out on the street without a home.