Credit or debit card (Visa, Mastercard, Discover) or automatic withdrawal from your checking account.
A letter from Ty Hendrix
I thought I’d die from embarrassment. I thought I’d never perform again. To say I was mortified is an understatement. But … I’m getting ahead of myself.
Growing up, I always had the energy and inclination to perform. My parents plugged me into the Salem theater community early on. I participated in Children’s Educational Theatre all the way through high school. Mom and Dad also had the patience to cart me off to tap lessons. Looking back, I can see how they probably questioned that decision. My ceaseless hours of backyard interpretive dance were enough to start eroding anyone’s sanity.
Surprisingly—given how much I loved acting and dancing—the idea of performing in front of anyone outside my immediate family was daunting. My first few shows were of the non-musical variety, and, to my surprise, were a wonderful experience. The directors, teachers, assistants and volunteers involved were incredibly supportive and inspiring. Every class, rehearsal, or passing interaction had such a relaxed and supportive tone. What a relief!
With musicals, however, it was different. My fear of singing far outweighed any normal performance anxiety. I went to an audition anyway. I found again that the people involved were just as great. But on stage it was a different story. I lived through a nightmare that would haunt any young (or even experienced) performer.
During the last show, I forgot an entire solo in front of a full audience. Not just a few words or a few bars of dance, but the whole number. I still bobbed and hummed with some semblance of rhythm, but there were no words coming out of my mouth.
I was suddenly consumed with a unique cocktail of dread, embarrassment and hope—that the stage would fall out from under me, and I’d never see the audience again. Singing, clearly, just wasn’t for me.
Fast forward a few years. After four years of college, I moved back to Salem in 2013 and settled into a new job and new apartment. I hadn’t done any theater in more than five years, and I found myself in a post-school funk. Actually, it was more than a funk.
In my time away at school, I dealt with some unexpected obstacles. During those four years, I encountered time and again the near-debilitating feelings of isolation, anxiety and fear. I struggled to find a community and nearly had to leave school. I was happy when my school years were done.
And then Pentacle Theatre stepped in. At a friend’s suggestion, I auditioned for the musical comedy, Young Frankenstein, in 2014. Immediately, I was surrounded by welcoming faces. Here was a community without judgment and an appreciative audience that laughed through every silly scene! New faces quickly became new friends. Here, there was no place for any feelings of isolation or anxiety. Even the lingering, irrational fear of singing soon began to dissolve.
During Young Frankenstein, and much to the surprise of my mortified former middle school self, I found myself part of a barbershop quartet. The encouragement, creativity and professionalism of everyone involved created a theater experience unlike any I had known. I didn’t drop a line or forget my song. I was hooked.
Pentacle helped me find my voice again.
But more importantly, it introduced me to a family of unique, creative and supportive people. Pentacle Theatre is a community of incredible depth. The people involved at every level have an insatiable drive and commitment to put on the best possible shows. And they manage to do that while being supportive of anyone (like me) who might walk in here a bit wounded.
This is where YOU come in.
Because of your financial support, people like me can find their voices.
Because of you, people like me find a “home” among fellow theater enthusiasts.
Your gift to Pentacle Theatre helps people like me overcome obstacles to become their true selves.
During this season of giving and inspiration, I hope you will join me in making a contribution to this unique and wonderful community treasure. Thank you so much, in advance, for everything you do to make my voice—and the voices of so many—heard again and again.
Ty Hendrix, actor and singer
There I am, second from the left…singing…in YF!
Actors: We need your help.
Our latest campaign appeals to actors and others familiar with our rehearsal space. We need a new floor and we need your help!
Read Geri Sanders’ letter describing the need and our fabulous solution. Geri’s letter about the floors
Donate, match, and get the whole match back!
Match your generous gift to Pentacle Theatre with a donation to the Oregon Cultural Trust and earn a dollar-for-dollar credit on your Oregon income tax.
That tax credit is in addition to the allowed deduction for your charitable gift to Pentacle Theatre. It’s a simple and fun way to give more without it costing you more!
Here’s how: Click on the Donate Now button above and make your donation.
Then visit culturaltrust.org/donate to make a matching contribution. Be sure to give both gifts before the end of the year to claim a tax credit on your Oregon 1040 for the matching contribution to the Cultural Trust.
The cultural tax credit is generous: up to $500 for individuals, $1,000 for couples filing jointly, and $2,500 for corporations.
Donate, match, and get the whole match back! It’s that easy to double your charitable giving to support Oregon’s rich cultural heritage.