Rhodes’ McCoy Theatre will offer a free season to the Rhodes and Memphis community for 2018-2019. After the staff stopped charging for tickets last year and saw an increase in attendance, they decided to make the experiment a permanent change.
“Our hope is that we can grow our audiences by eliminating a barrier of entry. We feel that art should be accessible to all by its very nature, not only to those who can afford it,” says Kevin Collier, McCoy Theatre’s managing director.
A variety of shows are coming out of the theatre this year. “We are producing the same body of work that we always have, but we are also seeing an increased amount of student-generated work through the Rhodes Theatre Guild, the Contents Under Pressure improv group, the Rhodes College Dance Company, and senior major projects that culminate in staged works or readings,” explains Collier.
Ryan Gilliam ’19 also believes the free season will help students enjoy more of the arts that Rhodes offers. “At the end of the day this is an investment in the cultural enrichment of the student body at Rhodes,” he says. “College students love two things: free products and free food. Now my friends have no excuse when it comes to getting into the theatre.”
McCoy’s 38th season includes three plays, along with four events ranging from shows by the Rhodes Theatre Guild to the 14th Annual Memphis Children’s Theatre Festival. The next performance is “Fabulation Or, The Re-Education of Undine” running Nov. 9-10 and 15-18.
All plays start at 7:30 p.m. except Sunday matinees, which begin at 2 p.m.
By Katherine Hancock ’19