Special to Sierra News Online
OAKHURST – As the great bard once said — “All the world’s a stage.”
While this holds true in the metaphor of life, in March, due to COVID-19, the physical stage of Oakhurst’s Golden Chain Theatre went dark for the first time in 54 years.
Now local patrons of the arts are needed more than ever — spurring the creation of the Golden Chain Theatre LINK UP program.
With the new program, theater lovers can become “a link in the chain” at the Golden Chain Theatre.
For the cost of one specialty cup of coffee per month, you could help save a piece of true Americana culture at the doorstep of Yosemite National Park, theatre officials say.
“Golden Chain Theatre has been an important part of our community for almost six decades. I have personally seen this theatre go through many ups and downs. We cannot depend on ticket sales when we are not allowed to congregate for entertainment. I’m praying that people will make a monthly commitment, however small, to keep it,” said Golden Chain Artistic Director Jennifer Janine. “This theatre has changed lives and impacted four generations of actors, dancers, vocalists, tech engineers, grandparents, teens, and lovers of the arts. If we all sacrifice the cost of one cup of coffee per month, it will secure our theatre for years to come.”
Due to current circumstances, the cast, crew and community that breathe life into the local theatre have come together in a digital way to overcome the challenging setbacks that coronavirus has presented.
Each Friday evening, Facebook audiences can catch new productions of melodramas and cabarets. Fans celebrate the return of local-favorite cast members offering hilarious entertainment — all from the comfort of home.
“These actors have been a dream to work with. This was new for all of us, but they are making it appear effortless,” says Jennifer Olsen, director of the Golden Chain Theatre. “Zoom has been easy to work with, and it’s been fun to add some magic to replace the magic that happens on stage.”
You don’t need to become a chain link to enjoy the shows, bring the theatre into your home for free. Catch:
- Oakhurst Dirty Laundry – Finale
A Local Melodrama Miniseries
Friday, July 17 at 7 p.m.
- They Just Keep Moving the Line
A Golden Chain Link Up Cabaret
Friday, August 21 at 7 p.m.
“Like” Golden Chain Theatre on Facebook and watch new shows, plus catch up on previously recorded shows, too. Regardless of the format, you can still cheer for the hero, boo the villain and sigh for the heroine – just with emojis, comments or gifs.
“I wanted to make sure that those watching would still be able to have all the fun they would have had from the auditorium,” says Olsen. “You just need to bring your own popcorn.”