Today, the Seattle Repertory Theatre turns 50 years old and it's giving the rest of us a gift—$5 vouchers to any show in its current season (except for the musical Once at the Paramount, but unless you're a moony-eyed adolescent who finds the Smiths too heavy and coarse for your tender ears, you shouldn't be interested in that anyway).

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The vouchers are good for the current run of Bo-Nita (which I recommend), its new adaptation of The Hound of the Baskervilles starring Darragh Kennan as Holmes, The Suit by Peter Brook, David Ives's kinky Venus in Fur, and the rest of 'em.

Here's how it works: You buy the voucher online, the Rep sends it to you in the mail, and you call in to schedule your show. May I suggest this as an extraordinarily inexpensive gift idea?

Can you imagine this guys to be or not to be speech?
  • Seattle Rep
  • Can you imagine this guy's "to be or not to be" speech?

The Rep's site is full of stardust memories—a young Richard Gere in the 1969-70 season, Bill Irwin, the mighty August Wilson (and Samuel L. Jackson performing in Fences in 1985), Lily Tomlin, Daniel Sullivan, Peter Donnelly, Christopher Walken playing Hamlet in 1974... Who knew?

I have a few fond memories of my own—stealing a cookie from the concessions table for the sake of a review and getting a $2.50 invoice in the mail for it (they were joking, but I paid it anyway), the time a disgruntled individual took a protest-dump in the rotunda lobby and rubbed it into the carpet, Yasmina fucking Reza, Hans Altwies giving such an intense solo performance in An Iliad that a woman in the audience lost her shit and interrupted the show, the first stirrings of what would become the Mike Daisey/This American Life controversy, the Russian clown imposters and their fake cat circus (that was a good one).

And, of course, the August Wilson plays—especially their opening nights, and especially the night the Rep raised the curtain on Radio Golf, its final August Wilson premiere ever.

Thanks for the memories, Seattle Rep. Here's to another few decades of drama.