Reluctant Dragon is making a comeback  next year.
Reluctant Dragon is making a comeback next year. CONTRIBUTED

LIVE THEATRE: Planning meetings can be so enlightening

WITH Pokemon GO not yet sweeping the North Arm area, The Indee Theatre decided that the next best fun thing to do was plan for 2017.

All the usual stuff came up - program and strategy budgets, budgets for this, budgets for that - when, in a wee lull, a voice said: "Aren't we lucky that community theatres usually end the year with a surplus? It'd be awful to have to rely on government funding and be given less and less each year, like the professionals.”

(Community theatres have to rely on their own initiatives to stay in business.)

That funding comment was the ring-pull that opened a large can of fizzy discussion on the cuts to cultural pursuits in this year's budget and the sports largesse handed out during the election campaign.

I do love these planning meetings because of the reasoned debate and because there's always a decent drop of red, plus dedicated drivers to put extra joy into having one.

Rightly or wrongly, nobody could recall a polly of any persuasion standing on a platform of even remotely bolstering the arts.

More interestingly, no one decried the right of sports lovers to a much-needed stadium, nor any other sports facility.

It was: "Good luck to them, but why can't culture be treated the same way? Or even a quarter of the same way would be nice.”

I felt that the point being entirely missed was that in this day and age, sport is our culture. But I've learned to be silent.

Meanwhile, one planning definite that did see daylight was that, due to the immense popularity of the previous Indee Children's Classic production of the Reluctant Dragon, it will have a return season next year.

Keith Souter will reprise the St George role and Ruth Montgomery again is the Reluctant Dragon.