From The Artistic Director | May 2015 – Christian Lebano

Posted · Add Comment

I found myself sitting in the theater at the Playhouse recently. It is not unusual for me to grab a few moments in the empty theater – there is something about our space that calms me and at the same time fills me with excitement and anticipation. It’s as if the walls radiate all the joy that have soaked in over the years. A theater is sometimes described as a “sacred space.” I understand that term, I even embrace it sometimes, but I’m afraid that it is off-putting to most patrons. Instead, lately, I’ve been describing our theater as the community living room. I want our patrons to feel as comfortable here as they do in their own homes. My hope is that the way we flop onto our couches to “stay in tonight” our patrons will feel as comfortable dropping themselves into our red velvet seats to see a show or a concert – maybe even at the last minute. After all we are within easy walking distance of most of the homes in Sierra Madre and a quick drive from the surrounding communities. You can’t raid your refrigerator, but our fare is pretty tasty nonetheless. I had never seen Neil Simon’s The Odd Couple onstage when I chose it for our season. I had seen the classic movie and I grew up watching the original series on television but I’d never seen the play. And now that I have, I can say with some confidence that SMP patrons are going to love this show. Alan Brooks and this wonderful cast and company of artists have created a really delightful confection for you.

We’ll end our 2014-15 season with Always.…Patsy Cline by Ted Swindley. This is a real treat of a show featuring 19 of the best country pop songs you’ll ever hear. If you don’t know Patsy Cline’s music – this show will make you a true believer.Our Colburn Conservatory collaboration concluded a wonderfully nourishing series filled with beautiful music in April. If you didn’t join us this season for our Sunday Concert Series – please plan to next year. All of these offerings will feed your souls and please your palates – and will undoubtedly soak into the walls and add to the good aura that our little theater has. Please come and enjoy – I won’t mind if you kick off your shoes and stay awhile!

Reach me at

Christian Lebano