Down the hill from the Tower House, around the curve of Olive Street, was this cottage for sale, number 26. Painted red, it may be mentioned, like a ripe apple. And attached to the porch/deck area, a lovely long bridge, right over Hayden Brook, landing on the farthest end of the Lakewood Theater parking lot. How perfectly placed! This will be the tea house. A welcoming place to do all of the Sugar Tree sort of things, and it will also have one room set aside specifically for artist use.
Sunday, April 28, 2019
Saturday, April 27, 2019
Just for fun, because I enjoy the history so much, I have a partially compiled list of actors from the 1920's & 1930's who spent time at Lakewood Theater, and then 'went on' as they say, to other things. Of course the most recognizable are Humphrey Bogart (1928, 29, 31, 35) Groucho Marx (1934) and Vincent Price (1937, 40) but depending on a person's particular interest in theater and cinema, there are several other stand-out names
Jean Adair (1920, 24, 28) Went on to play Martha Brewster in "Arsenic & Old Lace" in the 1942 movie with Cary Grant and other film credits
Friday, April 26, 2019
I can't give you better information about the house than what was written by Colin W. Sargent as "Wild Olive" and subtitled "Lakewood Theater Colony: a secret history" in the November 2018 issue of Portland Monthly Below are some edited excerpts. Please read the entire article at:
Tuesday, April 23, 2019
Monday, April 22, 2019
Back in the day, as the phrase goes, this was quite the place. Much of my youth around Lakewood Theater was spent hearing stories of the stars, the parties... and the rumors. Rumors that left me wondering how many theater folk stayed up late swaping tales over a few illegal cocktails during prohibition at 4 Olive Street. The possibility of Mary Phillips & husband Humphrey Bogart having a twirl or two around the floorboards of the old dance hall. Thoughts of the students of the Skowhegan Art School making regular visits inspired by the activity and art encompassing the theater and it's guests. The whole vibe of bohemian secrets surrounding what has since been dubbed Wild Olive thrilled me.*
A little less youthful now, with many other adventures in the performing and visual arts having involved me and shaped me along my way - including my son's personal interests in Lakewood Theater - when the opportunity came to actually own land & cottages on Olive Street, with the imfamous dance hall as the center piece, my very first thought was to re-create an artist community here.
Just imagining the old dance hall alive again with music, and mini art shows. Space for personal work. Space for voice lessons, dancing, guitar. Learning the craft of set design, or sculpting, or stained glass mosaics, or watercolors... whatever folks may want to do or teach. Garden space for veggies as well as flowers. A common kitchen for Lakewood Theater actors and thier families to make and share meals before or after rehersals and shows if they wish, a hot shower, and comfortable rooms to rest in; just like the bungalos and the inn of old where traveling theater companies stayed a season at a time and made a community of it.
Thusly, my vision for Olive Street is to make it a re-created/re-awakened art & theater community.
Right now I just have so many wonderful ideas for this place, and know it will be a journey to get there. Keep up to date on how it's going by following this blog. Certainly however it shapes itself, I am fortunate to have my husband and my son supporting the vision along the way, and this is their public thank you! - Dawnella Sutton
*You must understand, my relationship with Lakewood Theater began in the days when all those actors' photos lined the walls, I thought drinking Shirley Temples made me the height of sophistication, and when Van Johnson came to perform I still couldn't believe he didn't choose to stay in Brigadoon with Gene Kelly. By the time I heard the Wild Olive stories I was rife with a bohemian vibe myself.
There is a "Wild Olive" article I will share with you as soon as I find it
Friday, April 19, 2019
Mission Statement for Olive Street: to bring art and creativity to Olive Street; to make it a destination alongside Lakewood Theater: to support the theater and its people: and to be an ongoing self-sustaining project.
This blog was created to share snippets of the journey, and more importantly, for the opportunity to have others to engage with us in helping re-create & re-awaken an artists' community across the brook from the historic Lakewood Theater. Artists and benefactors of all kinds are most warmly welcomed.
The mission statement goes like this: to bring art and creativity to Olive Street; to make it a desination alongside Lakewood Theater: to su...
Back in the day, as the phrase goes, this was quite the place. Much of my youth around Lakewood Theater was spent hearing stories of the sta...
It's been suggested that we get official, so I've been doing lots and lots of reading and research, looking at how others have accom...