SEQUIM — Olympic Theatre Arts is reviving live stage performances by invitation only this month.
The arts center, at 414 N. Sequim Ave., is offering the debut performance of “Dr. Watson’s Workshop” in June with extremely limited seating to welcome members and season ticket holders back to live theatre in June.
The performances are intended as a thank you to OTA’s community supporters who purchased memberships and season tickets despite the uncertainties and performance limitations of the pandemic, said OTA Executive Director Ginny Holladay.
“We can’t wait to welcome our supporters back inside the theater,” she said.
“Dr. Watson’s Workshop” was adapted from the original Sherlock Holmes stories by Steve Rodeman, a Sherlock Holmes fan and OTA volunteer.
Because of COVID protocols, actors will wear masks and maintain social distancing, so the presentation will be a staged reading of the new play.
Audience members also will be masked and distanced according to state requirements for entertainment venues.
“Steve has prepared this new play exclusively for OTA and it’s always a treat to be the first people to experience any new work,” Holladay said.
“Dr. Watson’s Workshop” portrays actors and a director conducting a workshop to develop a new work based on Watson’s memoirs. The character of Watson is also present, played by Rodeman, who has also taken on the role of directing the play.
The play is set in London in 1920, to parallel the return to live theater that followed the last major pandemic (commonly referred to as the “Spanish flu”).
“The play was cast with various actors in the roles to allow broad participation, since everyone’s been cooped up and waiting to exercise their creative muscles,” Rodeman said.
“Although variations on the Holmes character and stories have been done, I wanted to focus on Dr. Watson’s role in their relationship,” he added.
“These stories were selected to highlight the way Holmes worked with Watson, and the way Watson contributed beyond just the chronicler of their adventures.”
The production closes OTA’s free-to-watch “Old Time Radio/Video Show” season, which was adopted as an alternative to a conventional season during the pandemic.
The previous performances of the season were videotaped and released on OTA’s website to engage the theatre’s creative community in a safe manner.
For more information, call OTA during box office hours from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, at 360-683-7326 or check the website at https://olympic theatrearts.org/OTA.