PARKERSBURG - Motown came to Parkersburg Saturday for the opening of the 2012-2013 season at the Smoot Theatre.
Smoot director Felice Jorgeson said the opening act of the season was "The Legends of Motown starring Horizon," which took to the Smoot stage Saturday night.
Jorgeson said the usual opening party for the theatre's season is to have a theme related to the performance. However, she said this year was a bit of a problem.
"We had some problems this year since the theme was Motown and we don't have any Motown groups in our town," she said. "We decided to have rock and roll."
About 250-300 people attended the opening party in Williams Court Alley and the first show of the year. She said the next show for the the Smoot will be "Titanic: The Musical." Jorgeson said four more shows are part of the package for season ticket-holders.
This year's opening was earlier than usual.
"We're trying to avoid interfering with West Virginia University football," she said. "We've been doing this for seven years now and other groups are catching on, so we have many things in town."
Wayne Waldeck, of Parkersburg, a member of the board of the Smoot Theatre, said the opening nights are a great time for the theatre and the community.
"We're here for the camaraderie and everyone getting together and having a good time," he said. "It starts the season off with a leg up."
Mary Carr, of Lowell, said she and her husband, Stephen, have been season ticket-holders at the Smoot for more than a decade.
"I like to take a look at what they have coming up this year," she said. "It looks like they have a good variety of programs this year."
However Carr said the one program that seems to be most interesting is one she may not get to see.
"I'd like to the the Titanic musical, but I'm not sure we'll make it," she said.
While they have been ticket-holders for several years, Carr said this was only the third time they made it to an opening night party.
Lee Rector, of Parkersburg, said supporting the Smoot Theatre is important since it is a hub of arts for the Mid-Ohio Valley.
"We're just blessed to have this kind of outcome with some many things happening," he said. "To see a crowd like this is just awesome.
"It's important to have these things downtown."