Following revelations of artistic director Scott Eckern’s contribution to the campaign to pass Proposition 8 in California and the subsequent announcement from Hairspray composer Marc Shaiman that he would be boycotting any future productions at Sacramento’s California Musical Theatre, Eckern has announced he is stepping down. If you work in musical theater, it’s not good business to piss off your base.
Said Eckern: “I am leaving California Musical Theatre after prayerful consideration to protect the organization and to help the healing in the local theatre-going and creative community. I am disappointed that my personal convictions have cost me the opportunity to do what I love the most.”
Continued Eckern: “I understand that my choice of supporting Proposition 8 has been the cause of many hurt feelings, maybe even betrayal. It was not my intent. I honestly had no idea that this would be the reaction. I chose to act upon my belief that the traditional definition of marriage should be preserved. I support each individual to have rights and access and I understood that in California domestic partnerships come with the same rights that come with marriage. My sister is a lesbian and in a committed domestic partnership relationship. I am loving and supportive of her and her family, and she is loving and supportive of me and my family.”
Eckern had been with the company for 25 years.