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The Big Center Hires the Big Voice for a Walk-On


by Jerome Weeks 7 Oct 2008

And the answer to Stephen’s question (see below) about who the Dallas Center for the Performing Arts would get to make their opening-day announcement is really quite simple. Just get the Greatest Voice for Announcing Anything in the World. James Earl Jones — who promptly gave the dignitaries and million-dollar arts patrons assembled at the […]

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And the answer to Stephen’s question (see below) about who the Dallas Center for the Performing Arts would get to make their opening-day announcement is really quite simple.

Just get the Greatest Voice for Announcing Anything in the World.

James Earl Jones

— who promptly gave the dignitaries and million-dollar arts patrons assembled at the Belo Mansion a little sampler (Jacques’ Seven Ages of Man speech from As You Like It, some reminiscences of playing Of Mice and Men at SMU, Fences on Broadway and The Great White Hope on stage and film — funny, there was nothing about this guy, though). And then Jones didn’t even announce the one (the only) new fact. The official opening date of the DCPA. That was left for John Eagle, head of the opening ceremony committee.

October 12, 2009.

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  • Stephen Becker

    The speech that Jones gave about The Theater and its importance seemed like one he had probably given before (though it was new to me, so I found it entertaining). But his discussion of playing Lenny in Of Mice and Men at SMU in the late 60s was enlightening. He talked about going to visit a hospital for mentally challenged people in Dallas and how that taught him that, “It wasn’t that Lenny couldn’t think — it’s that he thinks too much about only one thing.” he said. “He has a Ph.D in the softness of the fur of rabbits.”
    After listening to that voice for a few minutes, Jones had the crowd in the palm of his hands. The only thing that could possibly break his grip on them was the dulcet tones of a cellphone, which managed to go off three times during the presentation. Here’s hoping that a few of the arts patrons present learn where the vibrate button is between now and Oct. 12, 2009.