Warren Gerds/Critic at Large: Coronavirus: De Pere theater company sets nine fundraiser shows


Birder on Broadway

Event image.

DE PERE, Wis. (WFRV) – Live performances will return later this month to Broadway Theatre for “Local Artist Series: Supporting Broadway Theatre.” Info:

The theater’s performing space has been revamped because of the coronavirus COVID-19 concerns.

Broadway Theatre is home to performances of Birder Players and Birder Studio of Performing Arts.

“Over the past three months, Broadway Theatre has had the loss of nearly $70,000 in revenue,” Alicia Birder, executive director, said in an email. “Never a good time for pandemic, but are there worse times?”

Birder added, “This pandemic has thrown us all for a loop in the theater/education world, and we are managing the best we can. We have had several scenarios as the days have passed to put in place for when the time is right.”

For what Birder calls a “slow opening,” nine concerts are scheduled for the fundraiser series. “So many of our artistic performing friends have stepped up and offered to be a part of this. We are most grateful.”

The lineup:

+ June 25: Jamie Fletcher

+ June 26-27: Parker Drew and Dan Weaver

+ July 2: Shelly & Darren (Johnson)

+ July 9: Drama QUEENS

+ July 16: Only the Sun

+ July 23: Jeff Hinnendael

+ July 30: Drama QUEENS

+ Aug. 6: Barb Bazaldua

Birder said, “We have removed our risers. We now have small cabaret tables/chairs seating 30 percent of our typical capacity. All reservations must be made by phone to ensure seating layout is proper. All patrons ticket purchases are tax deductible. All bar orders will be done remotely with special table delivery.

“All patrons will sit only with those they purchase tickets with allowing a two to eight-person table with social distance between the tables. Our performers are either solo or duet allowing for much space between the performer and our audience.

“We will also be having sidewalk seating on Broadway for pre-show happy hour cocktails, thanks to De Pere Mayor James Boyd’s proclamation allowing this.” 

The pandemic has caused the cancellation or postponement of the musicals “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee,” “Disney’s Lion King Jr.” and “Mamma Mia!” along with six private student recitals, “Spring Showcase,” “Birder Players Cabaret” and spring and summer camps. “We are beginning our summer camp offerings both in person and virtually with limited enrollment,” Birder said.

“We will be back, and the rescheduling of our 2020/21 season is nearly in place.”

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