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Center Stage: Portraits in courage

By Staff | May 2, 2018

Marsha Wagner

The above may seem a strange title for a theater review, so be it, let me explain.

The first portrait belongs to Mary Lee Mann, president of the Fort Myers Community Concerts. She had the thankless job of elucidating the multiple changes in this season’s offerings.

First, there was the visa issues for the Lezginka State Dance Company, forcing its cancellation and replacement with the National Dance Company of Siberia as the final performance of the season. Add to that calamity the cancellation of Itzhak Perlman due to health concerns and the need to reschedule his performance to the 2019 season. What a kafuffle, to say the least.

After a heartfelt apology, Mann soldiered on – in her own initiable style – to announce the 2019 season’s performances. Bravo and thank you, we all understand these mix-ups.

Now let me say without a doubt, the National Dance Company of Siberia was in a word awesome! The courage it takes to do the amazing leaps, twists and turns, while brandishing sabers, is nothing short of gutsy. And the acrobatic tricks at breakneck speed were brave, as well as daring. When it came to a “flash finish,” the company gave its all and then some.

PHOTO PROVIDED “Harry’s Senior Moment,” featuring Harry Lichtcsien, is scheduled from from May 3-6 at the Broadway Palm Dinner Theatre in Fort Myers.

The Fort Myers Community Concerts 2018 season delivered once again with the best entertainment around at reasonable prices. I’ll fill you in on the 2019 season as soon as it is definite, so you can plan dates and order your tickets.

Now hear this! The Broadway Palm Dinner Theatre welcomes back “Harry’s Senior Moment” from May 3-6. Get to the phone to call the box office at 239-278-4422 and make a reservation to see how laughter, improv and palliative care made Harry’s return possible.

The fun-filled improv features 84-year young Harry Lichtcsien, who has been battling fourth stage colon cancer since 2011. Lichtcsien and his younger improv family cast take the audience on a frolicking, completely zany improvised show each time, proving laughter is still the best medicine. Lichtcsien has gone on to prove that excellent cancer treatment, early palliative care and regular doses of improv comedy have helped him defy the odds and live life large.

Following the opening night performance, audiences will have an opportunity to learn more about palliative care when Dr. Colleen Tallen, director of Palliative Care at Lee Health, leads a post-performance discussion. There will be another informative post-performance discussion following the May 6 show with Annalise Smith, senior vice president of Avow Hospice.

Don’t miss this wonderful affirmation of life through joy and laughter, as well as learning all about the benefits available through palliative care.

“Harry’s Senior Moment” is playing at the Off Broadway Palm Theatre, located inside of Broadway Palm, for five performances. They are Thursday through Sunday evenings, with a matinee on Saturday.

Ticket prices range from $25 to $45.

Either phone the box office or visit online at broadwaypalm.com/harrys-senior-moment. Just remember when you phone, tell ’em Marsha sent you. See ya’ll there for a dose of courage and comedy.