Time to say goodbye

Today’s a day I never thought I’d see – the day I’m stowing away my critic’s shingle and hanging up my critic’s hat.

As of today, I’m giving up this blog and leaving theater criticism to others.

It’s a move that has been long in coming. When I quit my job at the Orlando Sentinel, almost 18 months ago, I decided to keep reviewing – mainly because it didn’t look like the Sentinel was going to replace me. But the paper did eventually get around to naming a new theater critic (my friend Matt Palm), and eventually it began to seem to me that I could be spending my time doing something else.

Those many hours a day did get to me, I have to admit, once I no longer was being paid for them. The other things I’d like to be doing kept calling my name. And I also have to admit that I grew weary of the ever-increasing drama among the theater community, which strikes me as self-destructive and childish.

But the main reason I’m stepping back is that I’m done. Recently I realized that I’ve been a practicing critic for 35 years and that I’ve said all that I want to say.

So this is goodbye. I’m going to leave this site up for a while: If you theater people need to copy your old reviews, now’s your chance. But I’m no longer writing reviews, compiling listings, publishing audition notices or any of the other things I’ve been doing here since February 2010. You’ll have to look elsewhere for all those things.

I’ve had a swell time keeping up with all of you, and I appreciate all of your interest and encouragement and support. You’ll still see me at the theater (and I hope you’ll say hi). But I won’t be carrying a pen.

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119 responses to “Time to say goodbye

  1. John DiDonna

    You are a gem Elizabeth. This is killing me and you know that. But I know that we have many more years of loving theatre together!

    • I think the following is one of your best reviews ever, “I also have to admit that I grew weary of the ever-increasing drama among the theater community, which strikes me as self-destructive and childish.” Maybe everyone will learn from this.

  2. Bee R. Westphal

    I enjoyed your comments and followed them, so you will be greatly missed by your readers. I wish you the best and hope you enjoy whatever will be in front of you. Thanks again

  3. James Brendlinger

    Elizabeth,
    Your clear, honest voice will be greatly missed in the world of theatrical criticism. Thank you for so many years of service! Your review of “Anne Frank Superstar” will be at the front of my portfolio for the rest of my career. You are a class act through and through.
    Sincerely,
    James Brendlinger
    Penguin Point Productions
    Lake Howell High School

  4. Dr. Donna M. Schaeffer

    I’ll miss you! Thanks for the good advice you provided this newcomer to and part-time resident of Central Florida.

  5. Elizabeth,
    Thank you so very much for all you are. Thank you so very much for all you’ve done. Now. DO YOU!

    In friendship,

    Dennis Neal

  6. You’ve been an amazing voice and force for the arts in Central Florida and will be missed! Still…I can’t help but be kind of excited for you as you undertake new endeavors! Thank you for all you’ve done!

  7. Brian Minyard

    Thank you for your devotion to the arts! You should know that you will always be a part of my life…. since you provided me, “early in my career,” with the most memorable review I have ever had; proclaiming that as Adam in 7brides, I had “all the charm of a plank of Douglas Fir” To this day it brings me joy… primarily because it was soooo true! Thank you for your contributions to this community and I wish you well!

    Brian Minyard

  8. Eileen Simoneau

    Elizabeth,
    Thank you for your wisdom and passion for theater. I will miss reading your opinion. Hope to see you in the audience and around town.
    Take care.
    Peace,
    Eileen Simoneau

  9. Thanks for 35 years..now go make pottery and have a blast. See you at the theater..in the audience…just watching……………

  10. While I join everyone else in expressing admiration, I want to add something you can keep in YOUR portfolio. I would like to attest to your ability to be fair and honest. Not everyone will admit to a bad performance, but I will. You once gave me a good review, and maybe I deserved that. But you also gave me a bad review, and I know I earned that. For some reason, you had the mercy to not mention me by name, but only as “the actor who turned his back on the audience and mumbled.” Thank you.

    Ron Ross

  11. As an Orlando theatre-goer, I have appreciated your years of service greatly! Now that you are “retiring” from your critic’s post, I hope the drama loses your number and the good shows still find their way to your seat.

  12. Andrea Torres

    thank you SO much for everything! I loved getting things from you, hope to hear from you soon!

  13. And I hope you’ll have the courage to walk out on garbage such as the unabridged broadway hits sung backwards in pig latin ( which may actually be an improvement over much of what’s being presented in Central Florida. )

  14. Your voice will be missed, but I know we’ll continue seeing you at theater events for many years to come. Thanks for all you’ve done as a critic and a blogger, and thanks in advance for all you will do as a patron. Best of luck in your new(er) endeavors.

  15. Patrick Flick

    Elizabeth – thanks for all you have done for me personally, and the Orlando Theatre community in particular. When I moved to Orlando in 2002, you were one of the first people I had the pleasure of working with and knowing. A lot has changed since then, but my respect and admiration for you will always be there. As Carly Simon would say, “Nobody does it better!”

  16. I am very sad to see this. I just read one of your reviews the other day and kept thinking, “I wish Los Angeles had critics that were as good as Maupin.”
    While I may not have always agreed with your criticisms, they were always intelligent, well thought out, constructive and, at the very heart of it all, supportive of Theatre in Orlando.

    You will be missed.

  17. Betsey,
    I’m still going to ask you, now and then, what you think of such-and-such production because I value and trust your judgment. Attention must be paid to you, too. I’m just saying.
    See you at our Wednesday lunches.
    Love, De-an

  18. Deborah H Simpson

    gosh, darn it, I’m going to miss your newsletters…. enjoy your “new” time

  19. Carol Norwood

    Thanks for everything. Enjoy the shows.

  20. yetta bennett

    what made you decide to quit
    your posts were always anticipated by me and many others
    if it weren’t for you i would never have met beth marshall, john didonna
    and many more icons in the industry—-i am quite upset

  21. We will miss your reviews but wish you well!

  22. Betsey, you will be missed through your words, but not through your presence. I know I will see you at the theater =) Thank you for sharing your beautiful words and posting my photos with them, it was an honor. I’ll be the one in the front row with the camera…..you always have a seat next to me. =)

  23. Jim Rhinehart

    Brava! Thank you, Betsey – you made a difference!

  24. Thank you for your many years of service to our arts community, Ms. Maupin. I will miss reading your reviews of local art but I’m happy that we’ll still see you around the stage! Best of luck to you on your next journey! :-)

  25. Dearest Betsey,
    Thank you for all your years of wonderful reviews!
    Your writings will be missed.
    I wish the very best to you and Jay always.
    Much Love and Thanks,
    Ellie Potts Barrett

  26. Your voice and insight on the theater scene will be sorely missed. Thank you for your dedication and devotion. But brava for moving on to your next chapter of happiness. Looking forward to the next time our paths cross.

  27. This is a great loss. Florida Opera Theatre is grateful for all you have done to spread the word about us.

    Judy Lee

  28. Kevin Rushing

    We will miss Betsey and your genuine capacity to find the good in a show, while finding an eloquent way of communicating the things that did not work. Thanks for the honesty. Maupin, no one writes like you, you will be missed! 
    All the success in your future endeavors!
    Kevin Rushing

  29. Congratulations on shedding a skin, however fine and lovely, that has grown too tight. May you find happiness and reward in this newly cast role, and may you continue to be excellent at what you do. My son-in-law, whom I adore, is a ceramicist, very active in the Gainesville art scene. Go get ‘em! Nothing is more exciting than beginnings!

  30. Elizabeth,

    Wow,…well, I think you certainly deserve to take a rest from the pen! Thanks for all you’ve done for the Orlando theater community and beyond over the years. I still want some pottery!! See you soon..
    John E. Palmer

  31. I totally understand why but I am saddened that we won’t have you to keep us up to date! You have been wonderful and I have looked forward to receiving your newletters and critic! I wish you well and certain that I will be seeing you at the theatre! Much Success!

  32. Michelle Knight-Hinson

    Bravo, Betsey!

    I have spent many anxiety filled minutes scanning your reviews for any mention of my name. Thank you for being a piece of the theater community infrastructure.

    May this next chapter be more fun than you could possibly blog about!

    With gratitude,

    Michelle Knight-Hinson

  33. Your news hits us with shock, but not surprise. We’ve wondered at the way you’ve kept on being a force for years (well almost 2) since you left the realm of cash payment for your words. Your commitment to the growth of our theatre community was obvious, not only in the words you wrote, but in the fact that you kept writing those words.

    Good job. You deserve to lay down the pen and simply enjoy this part of our community. We will miss your public voice, but look forward to more time to hear your private voice as we see you around town.

  34. A very sad loss to the community!! Thank you for all that you have done and all the input, feedback, and encouragement you have contributed to local theatre. I’ll still you at the gym I hope!! (Oh, I guess I’d need to start going again for that to happen, huh?) Many hugs of enormous gratitude!!

  35. you will be sorely missed.

  36. You, like many other volunteers, have dedicated many many hours to something we all love. I’ll miss your near-daily email and the info.

  37. Joseph Hayes

    It’s been a great run, Betsey. Thanks for the kind words you’ve had for my work, and the occasional glasses of wine we’ve shared (not the same glass, obviously). See you soon!

  38. Can’t imagine any words of praise that I might add to what’s already been said. Even if there is a critic now, your presence will be sorely missed. I’ve never forgotten how you made it a point to welcome Biff and me to the theatre community as we were becoming more involved.
    The one positve thing I can think of is that now we’ll get to see you at the theatre at other times besides opening night.
    Maybe soon you’ll have your own Pottery Show, and we’ll get to go to your opening!
    Enjoy every moment; you’ve certainly earned it.

  39. Emmy Collins

    I am saddened not to hear from you (indirectly) daily, with all the news of everything theater. No one else but you would take the trouble to inform herself of all the happenings, and make them available to all of us. You are a treasure, and your blogs and critiques will be missed. However, I will watch for your penless self at lots of theater events, and look forward to your pottery sale in October. (Now how will you announce that?!)
    with admiration and affection,

    M E (Emmy) Collins
    M E (Emmy) Collins

  40. Meghan Moroney

    You are a delight. I have always appreciated your wit, your honesty, and your intelligence. I enjoy seeing you at the theatre, and am glad you’ll be visiting on your terms now. Your devotion to Orlando and its arts is beyond impressive. Thank you.

  41. Paul Castaneda

    I will be always grateful for your words (both public and private) and your advice. May your next adventures be as extraordinary as this one has been.

  42. Michael Edwards

    I remember going thru this with Clara Heironymous in Nashville. Another dear woman who always wanted to be entertained and made proud of the profession ,she always said ” I criticise those I think fell short of their potential and their responsibility to the audience.” She could be tough,as you. She also made us proud to be ACTORS. Thank you for your devotion to the art and the craft.

  43. Thank you for your many fine years of service to and well thought-out criticism of the arts here in Central Florida. You’ve more than earned the right to finally call it a day on your terms. Best of luck in whatever direction you take next!

  44. Lori McCaskill

    This makes me so sad! But you deserve a break after all these years. Enjoy your new pursuits, and please keep in touch!

  45. George Wallace

    Betsey,

    All the best to you. I am sure I will see you at various events throughout the community. Personally and professionally, you have been a pleasure to work with. Enjoy your next endeavour–whatever that may be (I see a lot of pottery in your future).

    Regards,

    George Wallace

  46. Betsey, you are the one and only. Your impact on theater in Orlando has been positively enormous, and yours is one of the most respected voices in the local arts community. So, darn right, have a seat. Go to the gym. See a play without taking notes! Make more pots!

  47. Well, crap. I can’t pretend to be all happy that you’re getting to retire and concentrate on other things – I’m far too selfish for that, and yours has been the critical voice I most admire because it has never led me astray. Yours is the voice that has held me to a higher standard. But I also know that you’ve been a friend, and that won’t change, and I know the next time we’re both sitting around the green lawn, or sharing pot luck, we’ll still be discussing theater. And I know that the thought that you may be out there will still make me strive to be that much better at any show I’m doing here, or elsewhere. Thank you for the opinions, the advice, and mostly, the love of theater you’ve shared with us all. {{{{}}}}

  48. Thank you for your incredible service to the arts community! As a small theatre, your input and coverage has been truly appreciated! You went above and beyond covering our expansion and we will be forever thankful. We look forward to seeing you and Jay soon! Much love,
    Heather Alexander

  49. Ned Wilkinson

    Clearly, I shouldn’t have been so late to the party; I’ll now have to content myself with my sole Betsey review (which I’ll be quoting for years). You’ll still be one of the faces I hope to see more often, once I get myself relocated in January. Feel free to “sock it to me” then!

  50. Thank you so much for everything! See you at the shows!

  51. Betsey Maupin, you gave Orlando theatre prestige.

  52. Mary Elizabeth McIlvane

    I am so grateful to have had the honor of being among your readers. We met face to face some years ago when you were venturing out for one of your first public show ing of your pottery.. Now enjoy and grow within your new found art after giving so much to me and many others. Enjoy, spin, form in a different manner with your hands and hearts. Thank you with warm blessings for your many new adventures.

  53. Dear Sweet Lady… You first reviewed me at age 16 and last reviewed me at age 45! We owe so much to you and I am so honored to call you friend! WINGS! FOLLOW YOUR BLISS!

  54. I am in Scotland at the Fringe reading this. I was just thinking about you yesterday wondering how you do it? How could one person possibly see so much theatre in such a short amount of time. The answer is, of course, love and passion for it. Thanks for all the support over the years. You will be missed. Wishing you all the best in the future.Sincerely, Janine Papin

  55. I’m crying over this, but I truly understand. On with pottery, or whatever you like. You’ll be greatly missed. Love Ya,

  56. Betsey, I think this is fantastic news for you and a loss for the local theatre community. I’ve loved looking at your art links on FB and know you will storm the world of art pottery just like you did with theatre criticism . As a woman of a certain age who is still plugging away in the biz, I cant WAIT until someday I can do what you are doing now. Please let me know if you ever plan to teach, as I am so there.

  57. Thank you for all of your support throughout the years. Looking forward to seeing you at the theater!

  58. susan whigham

    Bravo, Betsy! It was always such a pleasure to edit your articles at The Sentinel. I’ll look forward to reading/hearing about your pottery exploits.

    • Susan, it was always a pleasure being edited by you! I knew you would catch every stupid typo I made. Thanks for all your wonderful work for all those years. Hope to see you and Murph again soon!

  59. mikki scanlon kreikard

    yeah, like terry i admire the heart it took to keep going and appreciate all the information you shared alongside your critiques ~ so, now what? have you been hangin around the house living like an artist too long? are you becoming a pot head? ;o so honored to be picking up mine on such a specific day. the symbolism of them all over my family goes deep. love what you love but guard that ever precious heart. it’s going to be so nice to do a little play and not wonder what you are thinking next month! enjoy enjoy enjoy…live like fringe everyday ~ the more you let go the easier it gets. it allows wonderful room for another kind of beauty to enter your life…maybe you can keep a secret illiterate journal!! HA seriously, thank you for letting us see passion and commitment in all that you did in circles that quite frankly kept me cooking dinner instead of rehearsing plays.

  60. Sheri Heitker

    Best of luck to you, Elizabeth. May you love your next venture as much as theater.

  61. See, told you no one would care. (HA HA!) Good for you, B., see you at lunch soon.

  62. Skip Alderman

    Never got a chance to know you that well personally, but I somehow feel like a good friend is going away. I have always appreciated your insights and contributions to the theater community and certainly will miss visiting with you, through your writings. I thank you for all your valuable work and wish you the very best on your new path.

    Skip Alderman

  63. Arin Gullett Thrower

    Thank you for being one of the only resources in Central Florida for actors looking for auditions and to learn about shows. I always enjoyed reading your words and you are a role model to me. I wish you the best of luck in all you do.

  64. Kris Truelsen

    It may have felt like you were pounding your head against a wall to no avail, but you found a warm place, teeming with fondness and gratitude, in the hearts of many of us. Other things may end; that will not.

  65. Your dedication, devotion and spotlighting of the arts will be sorely missed, but may the next part of your journey be one of bringing just as much joy and delight into the lives of everyone!

    Laura Hodos :)

  66. Mark Nichols

    Betsey, The end of an era has arrived. As long as I have been a member of the Central Florida theatre community, you have been a nexus for all activity…through strong opinion for sure, but also candid observations based upon intelligent wisdom and a sincere desire to see theatre grow professionally. Every arts community needs leadership in many areas, your absence will be a significant loss of leadership (indeed at a time as you noted when selfish divisiveness from individuals threatens the whole…alas.). While you will be sorely missed, my friend, please go forth and pursue your dreams! Break a leg!

  67. It is a rare thing when an arts reporter and critic becomes one of the most positive driving forces in a community’s artistic life. But that is, and will be, your legacy in Central Florida. Thank you.
    My absolute best to you and to Jay.

  68. Cullen Douglas

    Betsey – Congrats on taking yet again another leap of faith – by following your heart. You inspire. Even though I’ve been out of the Orlando Theatre Community for almost 10 years I continued to read your published reviews and then inturn your recent blog posts. You were always so gracious with your words, but were also never afraid to call a spade a spade. Theatre is better because of you – the way I see it; there’s Rich, Brantley, and Maupin – end of scene, curtain closes, lights out.

  69. We wish you much peace, joy and love as you take this next leg of your journey!

  70. Oh nooooooo! (tears)

  71. Shonda Thurman

    Thank you, Ms. Maupin, for all of the wonderful reviews and your kind words about me when I took the stage.
    Shonda Thurman

  72. Seandrea Earls

    Elizabeth, thanks for your service to the CFL arts community. You have helped so many. You will be missed!

  73. Darlin Barry

    Elizabeth, well, dang. reading your words has been the accompaniment to my cup of coffee in the morning since the early ’90s. your insight and intelligent comments across the incredible spectrum of shows you’ve witnessed, I think, have helped us all discover how to observe and to learn from each other’s work: to find the joy in the silly and the heart in the serious. I’ve been honored by your kind words and had the occasional comeuppance too — all have helped me. you’ve been my vicarious eyes and ears in Orlando and in your trips to NYC. shoot…I will truly miss reading you. well, gal, onward to your next chapter. and, as the ol’ showbiz saying goes, ‘leave ‘em wanting more.’ with admiration…always, Darlin.

  74. PAULA KEENAN

    Godspeed and great luck to you. You do not know me but you have been most gracious to me and mine in the past. Keep everyone up to date on your future endeavors (pottery, your sister’s paintings, etc.) Art is art.

  75. Thanks for so many years of committment to our theatre community, hon. This was truly a beautiful note to go out on and a classy exit (which are two things a true theatre diva should always give their audiences). Thanks for illuminating our follies, foibles and successes. I hope to see you when the next overture begins. A toast, ladies and gentlemen, to Elizabeth Maupin!

  76. Gene Columbus

    Betsey, The time comes for each of us to step aside making room for the next generation to step forward – your shoes will be hard to fill but your wonderful thoughts will be missed most of all. As you have seen there is a whole community of theatre lovers that greatly appreciate all you have done to keep us honest as well as informed. I will miss your reviews but will be looking for you at the theater without your pen. All the best, Gene

  77. Bettie-Ann Candelora

    I’m so sorry you will be leaving us! Thank you for all you have done over the years to promote theater in Central Florida and for your wonderful blogs the past 18 months. You will be missed!

  78. We will miss all of your splendid postings. You have been amazing! FLORIDA OPERA THEATRE owes you a big thank you for all your support and comments. Best wishes to you.

  79. Betsey: During my short stint as a theatre critic, I always aspired to be half as insightful and relevant as you have always been in your writing. I never even came close. (because of that, I’m happy that you never read any of my stuff…LOL)

    Orlando will miss those words of wisdom, but they, as I, will always appreciate your continued support. (and some will just be happy not to have to fear your reviews anymore).

    Be happy. Break new legs (but break no pots).

    jim

  80. Elizabeth, as Vice Chairman of the Downtown Arts District, I want to extend our appreciation for your years of service to the arts in Orlando. We have enjoyed sharing your blog with our members on the Orlando Slice for more than 2 years. And as a former colleague of the Orlando Sentinel, please remember the golden days of the newspaper as I do and treasure them as there will never be another time like them. We look forward to seeing your pottery creations, maybe you can organize a show at CityArts Factory or one of the fine Galleries Downtown. And please forward this information to your theater contacts that the http://www.OrlandoSlice.com has a Performing Arts Group page to post auditions and news for free. Here’s the direct link, http://www.orlandoslice.com/group/danceandperformingartsinorlando. Or email them to barbara@dadorlando.com.

  81. If there is ever a movie I think about when I think about Elizabeth Maupin, it is the movie, “It’s a Wonderful Life”. Like George Bailey, you and your writings have made an impact on so many people and their theatrical and artistic communities. Thank you and I hope you continue to have a wonderful life.

  82. If you needed money, I would have been happy to pay for good reviews! Ah, but no sane person would would begrudge you your time for yourself, friends and family. Thanks for being that loud clear voice all this time and damn those who’d say otherwise. Its encouraging to note that we may yet see you in some, lobby, back row or driving in circles around the Shakes parking lot in the rain. Now what about that book I’ve been expecting to see for such a long time? I’ll wager its in a file on the old desk top, let’s say, a three quarters of the way to completion?

  83. Betsey – You may be putting down your critic’s pen, but you can’t put down your love of theatre, or take back the inspirations and insights into this wonderful art form that you have so lovingly and thoughtfully given us for 35 years. You have earned our admiration, respect and awe. I won’t say you’ve earned a rest, because I don’t think you are going to rest. Your stimulating prose and high standards have lifted the Orlando theatre audience and theatre creators and we’re not able to go back. We’re going to go forward, because we’ll still be following you, holding your hand, and enjoying with you what you have helped us know and love all the better. Thank you, and we’ll keep thanking you, I am sure.

  84. The best is yet to come. Enjoy !

  85. Betsey:

    Our profession is the poorer for your leaving it. I hope you take pride in all that has been written here about all you have contributed.

    Chris Jones
    Theatre Critic
    Chicago Tribune

  86. Betsey:
    How Jane and i will miss you! Your dead aim and sure shots were entertaining, lively and always on mark. I really appreciated your supportive, caring approach to the theatre and its folks. I wish you well, and thank you for, at least the last 25 years of fine writing (that’s all we’ve known). I’m sure we’ll see each other at some artsy stuff, and I’ll want to know how you’re spending your life now. All our best,

    Ken and Jane

  87. Char Midkiff

    Oh wow Elizabeth I don’t think I remember Orlando before you. Thank you for always being here consistently for our community. May you enjoy the next season of your journey…whatever you chose to do.
    Best!

  88. Amy Elizabeth Gray

    I has a sad. :(
    I wish you could go on forever reviewing theatre, but I do understand how important living a life outside of a “job” is, especially when it’s no longer a paying job!
    All my best,
    Amy

  89. Thank you for your contributions to our community! Enjoy your time! :)

  90. Pammie O'Bannon

    You will be missed….although I do hope to see you now and then. Will you still post on FB when you are having pottery sales? I would love to catch one of those.
    Thank you so much for all the time and effort!! xoxo

  91. You know I am still in denial. I keep coming back here to see if you changed your mind.

  92. You are leaving as the Professional you are, with dignity and without shame. I wish you the best in everything you do because you deserve it! See you in Facebook!

  93. As a new member of the community in the last two years, your Blog has educated me more than anything else into what happens, who people are and what I should be interested in around the Orlando Area. I have gained work from audition notices you have posted, and have enjoyed being guided around theaters by your recommendations. Thank you for your dedication!

  94. Dearest Betsy,
    We have shared the past 35 years together. Thank for all you have done to help keep a our community together and thriving. Your voice, insight and wisdom will be greatly missed. You have been a good friend to us all. I wish you the best and hope our paths will still cross.
    Bless you,
    Erin Miner

  95. Michael Marinaccio

    There is no one on this planet who has sat in the audience for more of my projects than you; not my wife, friends, or even my mom. Thank you for being a cornerstone of our community for all of these years, for helping make me a better artist though insightful criticism, and for never being afraid to tell the truth as you saw it.

  96. I will miss your reviews. I’ve learned much from your writing. The thoughtful questions and insights connected not only with the theatre-geek part of me, but with the humanist as well. Thank you. May you soar (like the origami crane!) in your next adventures!

  97. You people are all so wonderful. Thank you so much.

  98. Leslie Penuel

    What a loss for the theater community. You took on a huge task with this blog and provided a comprehensive resource for our community. I have been skulking around in the shadows of your blog for some time… enjoying your reviews and taking advantage of all of your useful info. Thanks for your passion over the years. Wow will you be missed. Much success and happiness in the future!!!

  99. I wrote to tell you of my dismay upon your retirement from the Sentinel. Then we had the benefit of your continued presence in your blog – for free!
    Thank you for that extra effort.

    Thanks for never falling in love with the sound of your own voice.
    But always loving the process…

    We’d all be poorer in spirit without you.

  100. I can add nothing more except another heartfelt thank you from Emma and me. I will never forget your bothering to critique one of Em’s theatre reviews,a homeschool project,and the encouragement you always gave her whenever we met you.We both learned from you and our knowledge and passion for theatre increased because of you. May you and Jay enjoy much happiness and success in the future.

  101. Jim Goodrich

    Betsey,
    Both Freddi and I will deeply miss your intelligent and insightful reviews of Orlando theater. And all the theaters in the Orlando area, their actors and directors and artistic staff will seriously miss the support that you have provided in so many ways. The absence of your support and your voice will be a very substantial and irreplaceable loss to the community.
    Best wishes and see you at the theater.

  102. Again, thank you all for your kind words. They mean more to me than you could know.

    – Betsey

  103. Tommy Keesling

    To think that I won’t ever again say the words “Did you see Betsey’s review?” to friends and fellow theatre-goers after a show opens is a sobering thought to me. Your reviews were filled with intelligence and passion, and I appreciate the respect that you showed to all of us who work and have worked in the Orlando theatre community. I echo Mike’s comment — since you first reviewed me in 1983 you’ve undoubtedly seen more performances of mine than anyone else. Jeez, that alone certainly has to earn you some kind of reprieve.

  104. Dear Betsey:

    I have been so long absent from the theatre myself that I just recently heard the news.

    I echo the loving sentiments that have been sent so far. You have taught me so much over the years, about the theatre, about writing, and about the art of criticism. Most of all I have learned to be a better person and a gentler spirit from you. Your kindnesses to me and those I love will always be cherished.

    Love to you and yours.

    Peace. :-)

    Bobbie Bell

  105. Nancy Krayer

    I’ve been telling everyone about your blog.
    thanks for all your time!
    enjoy your new adventures!!!!

  106. Christine Haskins

    There have been so many comments from people from the theater community, that I just want to represent “the rest of us.” I have not been in theater, do not attend as much as I’d like to and do not know you personally. But I’ve loved your writing, trusted your reviews, felt your passion and will miss your presence. Thank you.

  107. Oh my what will our theatrical community do without your incredible insight and knowledge. I have to admit, you got it right most of the time !!!
    I wish you well.
    Love always, Ann D. Hurst

  108. ‘Tis certainly a year of transitions, new beginnings and challenges. I will miss your regular writing, but look forward to adding more 3-D creations to my slowly growing collection of EM originals. Love.

  109. Rory Trumbore

    What a relief it must be to finally have time to start that second (or third (or ‘nth’)) career as a Fringe Volunteer. Looking forward to the next time I can rip your ticket at a local theater.

  110. Terrence Girard

    Elizabeth, I must add my thanks and best wishes to the many already here. For as long as I can remember, your writing has been a beacon to those of us over on the east coast (Melbourne), an essential link to our theatrical colleagues in Orlando and beyond. I remember your reviews of shows produced by the Ensemble Theatre and the Phoenix Theatre. We were honored you’d travel so far to see us, and even when your reviews stung, we knew they were written without malice and in the pursuit of excellence; they made the more laudatory reviews all the more gratifying. The very best of luck to you in your next chapter.

    Terrence Girard