In addition to the stories from Commonweal Ensemble Members, we are also including memories from our dear friends regarding their experiences at the theatre over the years. In this special edition of 25 Seasons—25 Stories, Million Dollar Club Member and our great friend Janine Holter offers her memories of sharing afternoons and evenings at the theatre with her mother. Janet Holter passed away one year ago today and we honor her memory today and everyday.
My Commonweal Memory
by Janine Holter
In 2005 my husband and I purchased some property south of Lanesboro, an area called Chickentown. We set up a camper and made it our get away. Each summer my Mother and I would journey together and take in the beauty of SE Minnesota. We checked out the shops, the restaurants, the events in Lanesboro, and enjoyed the beauty of this little slice of Heaven. We played Scrabble, talked about books, and enjoyed each other’s company.
My Mother always loved the theatre and in 2008 we took in our first Commonweal performance, “Man of La Mancha.” We were so thoroughly impressed at how this little theatre in this little town could put on such a professional performance. Each year after that we made it part of our annual trip to take in at least one, if not two performances.
I treasure the “memories” that my Mother and I made each summer and the Commonweal was a part of those memories.
In 2011, we took in our last performances together. I could not hold back a smile as I looked upon my Mother’s furrowed brow when Seymour fed body parts to Audrey II (the man eating plant) in “Little Shop of Horrors” and were so impressed with the musical capabilities of the cast belting out each song. And then there was “Sylvia.” We laughed out loud as Sylvia set to dragging her behind across the floor and felt a heavy sigh as we searched for the tissues when we learned Sylvia lives a long life with the family she desires.
Sadly, this would be our last time making memories at the Commonweal, as my Mother passed away less than a year after we took in these shows, but what a joy to take in the art of live performance with someone you cherish!!
Thank you Commonweal, for making lasting memories that I will hold in my heart forever.