Every landmark building needs a strong foundation…
…a source of strength that helps shoulder the burden
…and a base of support upon which the structure must rest.
In each issue of “The Curtain Speech” this section will highlight some of the Auditorium Theatre’s cornerstones—individuals, corporations, and foundations whose support has been especially heartwarming. We are incredibly grateful for their generosity and for their kindness. And we want to acknowledge them because their selflessness is instrumental in helping our National Historic Landmark persevere, prosper, and grow.
They are committed to making a difference in the world.
They are friends just like you.
They are our cornerstones.
The arrival of the New Year is a time of contrasts. As we turn another page on the calendar, we have occasion to celebrate, reflect and take pride in our accomplishments. Yet it is also a point when we look toward the possibilities that lie before us and revel in the excitement of the unknown.
Of course, no matter which way we turn our gaze—to the past, present, or future—none of our achievements could be possible without some of the Auditorium Theatre’s most compassionate and treasured friends. Two of these dear members of the Auditorium family, Frantz and McGhee Osse, have been instrumental in helping our theatre reach unprecedented success.
Success, however, is nothing new to these exceptional individuals. Frantz is the founder of the consulting firm, Thane-Kenscoff, and McGhee currently works as Co-CEO of Burrell Communications Group here in Chicago – one of the country’s largest ad agencies specializing in multicultural marketing communications. McGhee says that her interest in advertising was sparked by Darrin Stephens during the days of the popular TV show, “Bewitched.” Ironically, many at the Auditorium Theatre would more likely associate McGhee with the character Samantha, because the speed, ease, and scope of her endeavors throughout our organization suggest that she almost certainly possesses supernatural powers.
They are extremely appreciative of all the Auditorium Theatre has to offer, particularly “Too Hot to Handel” and Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. Some of their favorite experiences at our historic landmark include: the festive atmosphere surrounding Ballet Folklorico de Mexico, hosting a group of friends at Ailey performances over the years, and attending a trip to Cuba during which they encountered a window to customs, culture, and artistry with which many people in the United States are unfamiliar.
McGhee and Frantz are particularly impressed with the eclecticism of the Auditorium Theatre’s programming and they “love the diversity that the theatre provides.” We at the Auditorium like to say that the theatre means many things to many people, and these two dear friends echo our sentiments by stating that “there is something for everyone each season.” They, like so many others throughout the Chicago area, are eagerly anticipating the Auditorium Theatre’s upcoming 125th anniversary, and are looking forward to seeing The Royal Ballet, which will return to Chicago for the first time in thirty-seven years.