An Oklahoma Goodbye.

Larry Peyton BroadwayI first met Larry Payton, the President of Celebrity Attractions, a Tulsa based Presenting and Producing house, in 1999, when I was the Company Manager of the National Tour of Jekyll & Hyde.

Normally, when a Company Manager gets to a new theater, his or her first job is to track down the Presenter, say hello, check-in, and collect a check.

In some cities, it’s not the easiest thing to do.

But not in Tulsa.

Larry tracked me down before I could even start to unpack my road box.  He greeted me with a huge smile, a hearty handshake and invited me to dinner later that night.

And he greeted me that same way every time I saw him over the next plus years, including when I saw him at the Broadway League conference just a few short weeks ago.

Larry passed away late last week, and I’m sure that I’m not the only one in in the industry that feels that the road will never be the same.

He was a religious man.  And I remember after dinner that night we met, he told me he would put me on his prayer list.  And now it’s my turn to do the same for you, Lar, as well as your friends and family in this difficult time.

You’ll be missed, Mr. Payton.  Thanks for making us all feel so at home, when we were all so far away.


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