In “Carter Barron History,” the author discusses the creation of the Carter Barron Amphitheater, and the change in hosts of the amphitheater that changed the way it was recognized and viewed. The amphitheater was originally built to celebrate the 150th anniversary of Washington D.C., and was seen as a place where “all persons of every race, color and creed” could come together to see shows. The first show at the amphitheater was written by Paul Green and was called “Faith of Our Fathers.” The show was “met with mixed reviews,” however the amphitheater was stated to be “the best outdoor amphitheater ever seen.” After two seasons of this show, new hosts came in such as Constance Bennett Coulter, the Feld Brothers, the wife of one of the Feld Brothers, Cella-Door Dimensions, and then the National Park Service who continues to run the amphitheater today. With each new host, the amphitheater took on a new genre of music or theater and “continues to host a variety of performances,” many of which are free to the public.
I am going to use this article as an exhibit and also background for my mapping commonplaces project because it explains a lot of the history of the Carter Barron Amphitheater, and how this history changed the way the amphitheater was viewed. With the different hosts, the amphitheater took on different genres of music and theater, which changed the opinions that people had of the amphitheater, and also changed who would visit the area to see shows. I will be able to map this change and explain how the amphitheater changed through the history of Rock Creek Park to make it what it is today.
In “Washington Post Ends Its Two-Decade Long Carter Barron Concert Series,” the author discusses the end of the Washington Post’s series of free summer concerts at the Carter Barron Amphitheater. This decision came after the Post sponsored events for nearly twenty years and without much explanation. However, this is not the first change that has been made with the amphitheater’s schedule in the recent past. In 2013, the season at the amphitheater was limited, and in 2014 the season did not start until August because of “construction and administrative issues.” The Post shows were not only fun for families and other citizens of D.C., they were also “a highly anticipated and celebrated tradition for the local artists.” These local performers were able to do shows on stage which gave them exposure and allowed their names to be heard. While the Post no longer sponsors show in the amphitheater, the National Park Service still hosts shows, however the future of the performances at the amphitheater is unknown.
I am going to use this article as an exhibit for my mapping commonplaces project because it explains one of the ways the amphitheater was used and viewed. The Washington Post sponsoring events made the amphitheater sought after by performers, while also being viewed as a fun place for families and friends to go to see shows. The shows at the amphitheater that the Post sponsored were also free, which was another reason many people enjoyed visiting the theater. This particular time period when the Post sponsored shows is a great example of how the opinions of the Carter Barron Amphitheater changed over time.