‘On Golden Pond’ draws crowd to Clayton Center

The Foothills Community Players actors are getting schooled by their audiences.

Playing to a nearly sold-out crowd on opening night in the Haslam Family Flexible Theatre of the Clayton Center for the Arts, actor Tom Ireland said that the actors learn something every performance, in particular remembering that some of their lines in this dramatic play are really quite funny.

“The actors forget there are parts in the script that are funny, because we rehearse and rehearse, and it tends to lose spontaneity to our ears. When a crowd hears it for first time, they start laughing, and you realize that the line really was funny, and the play becomes more spontaneous to you again,” he said.

Producer John Cherry said the show also did well the second night on Saturday, despite competing with SEC football. Sunday matinee drew a respectable crowd as well.

FCP members are hoping for even bigger crowds during the second and final weekend of their production. “The show is in really good shape. The actors are doing a tremendous job,” said Cherry. “The theater is a great venue for this particular play because of the intimacy it brings,” he said.

Cherry said the audiences appreciated performances, particularly the performances by Tom Ireland and Eileen Conway. Ireland played the character of Norman in the play and said the opening night crowd was outstanding. “They were truly plugged into the play and were ready to be entertained,” Cherry said.

Remaining show times are at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 16, Friday, Sept. 17 and Saturday Sept. 18 with a matinee at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 19. All shows are at the Clayton Center for the Arts.

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