Sponsor Spotlight - DeWitt Ross & Stevens/Wrede "Bud" Smith

We are fortunate to receive the support of various Madison businesses and foundations, and it's always a pleasure to turn the spotlight to one of the generous sponsors that help make our season possible. This month, we sit down with Wrede "Bud" Smith from DeWitt Ross & Stevens and get his perspective on supporting the work at Forward.

1. Why do you sponsor Forward Theater Company?

DeWitt Ross & Stevens is honored to sponsor Forward Theater. Its productions are entertaining, inspirational, often thought provoking, and always highly professional.

2. What has your sponsorship experience been like?

One of the special benefits of sponsorship is being invited to the “First Reads”, at which we are privileged to listen to the actors read through the play together for the first time. They sit around a table with no costumes, no props, no scenery, and no prior rehearsal together. Yet they play off each other with skill and great timing. It is like seeing the play come alive for the very first time.

3. What draws you to theater, or what do you enjoy most about it?

We enjoy all live theater. But we especially enjoy FT because it is so accessible. For example, each show is followed by a “talk back” at which the audience may talk directly to the actors and learn how they prepared for their roles and what influenced their interpretations of their characters.

4. What has been your favorite Forward Theater experience?

I particularly enjoyed last year’s production of Silent Sky. It was visually beautiful, full of humor, and surprisingly emotional at the end.