On Monday night, September 8th, Bay Theatre’s reading of the comedy Four Weddings and an Elvis finished with a surprise twist not in the Nancy Frick script. As the reading, held at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Annapolis, ended, before anyone could leave, a real wedding ceremony began as Bay Theatre Artistic Director Janet Luby and Steven Strawn were wed in a brief ceremony before more than 200 friends and theatrelovers.
Reached today, Luby told us “I had the reading planned as just a normal reading- Unitarian church and date had been set since spring. Then, separately, mid summer Steven and I decided we wanted to get married so we were considering a destination wedding or just a courthouse Annapolis wedding and then I thought “Wait a minute! we’re doing a reading in a CHURCH in September with many of our friends and acquaintances………” Let’s tag it on at the end! But keep it a surprise so there’s no big obligation on anyone’s part of traditional wedding expectations. No bridzilla, groomzilla stress!
And so much fun it was! And it really stayed a secret!
They had the church. They had the surprise wedding planned. All they needed was a play.
“I wanted a play that would keep with the theme of the whole idea,” Luby continued. So I found the Nancy Frick play. Valerie Leonard produced it and Richard Pilcher directed. As usual – we didn’t rehearse any of it till that same afternoon, then show time at 7.”
We had to ask about the proposal.
“I always thought it would be romantic to be proposed to on a Ferris wheel at night – corny I know. I mentioned it once a long time ago. In July, we were at a local fair on a gorgeous summer night and he suggested we ride the Ferris wheel and that’s where he did it. But turns out he’s DEATHLY afraid of Ferris wheels so he couldn’t wait to get off. It was really funny.”
Congratulations to the happy couple.
Bay Theatre Company, an acclaimed Annapolis company, is currently searching for a new home. More information is here.
Editors note: Thanks to John Glass for this news tip.