A Letter from the Artistic Director

January 10, 2021

Dear Totem Pole Playhouse family:

The first time I traveled Route 30 from Gettysburg to Caledonia State Park was in 1997.

I had been offered a job directing, musical directing and acting in SMOKE ON THE MOUNTAIN for the 1997 Totem Pole Playhouse season. I was working for another theatre in Mt Gretna and I drove the turnpike to 15, took 15 South to Gettysburg and then Route 30 West to Totem Pole Playhouse. There was no way I could have known that this place; this magical tucked away treasure would become such an integral part of my life.

I was greeted by a dashing Carl Schurr who gave me a tour of the property and introduced me to sweet Sue McMurtray and their staff of wonderful theatre professionals.

… and thus began my love affair with Totem Pole Playhouse.

Twenty three years, twenty five-plus shows and countless friendships later, I am so honored and humbled to call Totem Pole Playhouse my home. To follow in the footsteps of such wonderful leaders as Rowan Joseph, Ray Ficca, Carl Schurr and Wil Love, William H. (Bill) Putch and the Putch family, and the Founding Artistic Director Karl Genus and his wife Muriel Benson is so very daunting and inspiring.

We all look forward to bringing live theatre back to Caledonia State Park when it is safe to gather together once again. This has been a long intermission; however, the Second Act will begin shortly and Totem Pole Playhouse will persevere.

Stay safe, and Happy New Year  to you and yours.

David Hemsley Caldwell – 2021