For everyone connected to the theatrical universe, onstage or off, its value is priceless. Talent is discovered, jobs are created, careers are launched, lives are changed. No, I am not an actor. But, my life was forever changed by the Guthrie Theater. When I was 23, then-artistic director Michael Langham hired me as publicity director from hundreds of applicants. What an honor.
As publicist, I garnered positive local, national and global coverage. I learned how to be a team player. Surrounded by a swirl of talent, personalities, backgrounds, skills, occupations, cultures and gender choices (hey, it was the ’70s, and I was naive), my job was to convey the ideas and emotions behind everything the Guthrie produced. No digital/social media age existed at the time. I had my red IBM Selectric typewriter. And, my work launched me on to a highly successful PR business of my own.
I am now retired and happy. The talent I had the opportunity to meet and work with was unprecedented for me. I now “pay it forward” with my time and financial support as a grateful community volunteer. Much love to you on your 60th birthday, dear Guthrie! I am forever devoted to you for directing me through my own “stages.”
MELISSA COHEN SILBERMAN, Golden Valley
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