We had the good fortune of connecting with Laurie Jones and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Laurie, what’s something about your industry that outsiders are probably unaware of?
The industry is performing arts, notably live theater. I believe most outsiders are not aware of the intricate process that is demanded when producing a production.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
Having been involved with vocal performance in high school and college, anything pertaining to the fine arts had always been appealing to me. I auditioned for a play at Theatre Off The Square just on a whim and landed a leading role. The rest is history, as they say. After I got involved with the quaint theatre company, my husband joined me. In the last 18 years, I have acted; have been an assistant director and a music director to several productions; Director of our Summer Kid’s Theatre Camp; and a member and President of the Board of Directors. Retired after a 33 year career as an educator, not only is Theatre Off The Square a huge part of my life and my husband’s life, but also the lives of our family.
Theatre Off The Square is the oldest running live theatre group in Weatherford, Texas. It is a subsidiary of the Parker County Fine Arts Association, a nonprofit 501 (c) 3 corporation and is managed by a Board of Directors who donate their time, effort, and resources to benefit the theatre and the community. All of our productions require a lot of team effort – from the actors on stage and the crew behind the scenes to the folks who run “Front of House,” such as the Box Office and Concessions. It is a 100% volunteer organization. Theatre Off The Square is an entertainment venue, but also a business that must be run efficiently. The theatre operates on donations and tickets sales alone. The challenge has been to provide stellar productions on a limited budget, but we are careful with what we do and have proven to reach our goal of pleasing our patrons.
TOTS, as its loyal patrons call it, has produced some of the most popular and entertaining plays in America, including plays by premier playwrights like Neil Simon and Agatha Christie as well as popular contemporary playwrights like Jaston Williams, Joe Sears, and Ed Howard of Tuna fame and the team Jones Hope Wooten. Several playwrights have visited the theatre, including Jones Hope Wooten who attended the theatre’s production of their play “The Red Velvet Cake War” which was the Southwest Premiere of the show and the WORLD PREMIERE of their play “Doublewide, Texas Christmas.” In December, the theatre will be closing its 23rd Season of Shows and looking forward to the 24th season in January 2023.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Fire Oak Grill
Tavern on the Lake
Drink & Hang out:
Antebellum Ale House
Theatre Off The Square
Doss Heritage and Cultural Center
Vintage Car Museum
Museum of the Americas
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Parker County Fine Arts Association Board of Directors, volunteers, and patrons of Theatre Off The Square
Other: Tik Tok @TheatreOffTheSquare
Claire Varnon Photography