I recently saw a local production of the play Suite Surrender, an innocent comedy that I expect is targeted directly at theaters who cater to an older, conservative crowd. I say this for a few reasons:
- It’s only a few years old but feels like it’s from the 40s.
- It takes place in 1942.
- Almost no coarse language.
- No naked butts.
- Sexual innuendo that’s so vague, you could argue that it isn’t even there if you wanted to.
The production I attended was performed literally in the backroom of a church. It’s a legendary community theatre here in Oklahoma known as The Jewel Box, and specializes in shows you can be comfortable taking your grandparents to. They do just as much quality stuff as anybody else, but I don’t go to their shows that often because their material is always so safe. But why is that bad?
That’s the question I’ve been asking myself since leaving the theatre that night. It was hilarious at times, and all the lead actors are recognized, talented local artists. The director is one of the most prolific performers in OKC. Just because they don’t drop the f-bomb, or ask challenging questions, or explore the dark nature of the modern age, doesn’t mean its not worth seeing. In fact, I had such an excellent time I woke up the next day and watched His Girl Friday to get even more 1940s fix. So my goal is to be more open-minded about the types of theatre I consider, just as I hope other people will be about my work.
Primary Photo by Rhema Kallianpur on Unsplash