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Voice: Ways to improve shows: better seating practices, no flash photos, no kids

July 06, 2001

I recently attended the two performances of the Dancin' Feet version of "The Little Mermaid." Congratulations, Gretchen Simms, on an excellent job. It was a bit too long, especially with the auditorium so full but still nice.

The first night security of the Southwest theater locked the doors after they felt the auditorium was full. A bathroom pass had to be obtained to leave the building. There were plenty of empty seats but security didn't check aisle by aisle and allow others to come in.

The second night was horrible. Security punished the early arrivers by making them wait in the lobby for up to 45 minutes. They should have been by the doors making sure that the early ones didn't allow their friends and family to join them in the line. Then when the doors were opened it was a stampede to get a seat. Security was very irresponsible in not allowing people on crutches and in wheelchairs to go first. I'm amazed that everyone made it through without any injuries.

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It was nice that it was announced that there wasn't any saved seating and that everyone was to move to the middle. However, don't punish the people who cooperated by not going aisle by aisle telling people to move their belongings for others.

Also, the technical crew should have remembered to announce no flash photography and asked people to leave if they insisted on taking pictures.

It was very rude of those people to have their flash going off several times during a dance. Finally, people with children under the age of 4, do everyone a favor and leave them at home. It would have been more enjoyable to watch the performance without your crying and whining kids. They would thank you also.

ROBERTA MASON

Imperial

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