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Charles Morey , playwright, director, artistic director of Pioneer Theatre Company, and Joyce Cohen , actor
Together » 28 years in June; five years on and off before that.
On working in the same field » "We understand what each other is going through," Morey says. "When we do work together, one thing that we do well is leaving our private life at home and our work life at work." Adds Cohen: "If things are not going well, he can understand why I'm feeling the way I'm feeling. I don't have to explain."
How they met » Both were working at a New York theater, she playing the lead at the upstairs auditorium while he was house manager downstairs. "She came to audition for me three years later," Morey recalls. "I said, 'Hi, Joyce, I know you.' She turned and looked at me and said 'I don't know you.' "
Fran Pruyn, artistic director of Pygmalion Theatre Company, and Melanie Olmstead, stage actor and film crew
Together » Since the late 1990s.
On working in the same field » "We know, to be involved in these art forms, we cannot always have a predictable schedule. It takes a certain amount of juggling to figure out who is going to get the horses fed and the dogs walked, but our schedules are just a part of who we are," Pruyn says.
How they met » Melanie enrolled in an acting class that Fran was teaching at Westminster College. The pair corresponded when Melanie moved away for graduate school, Melanie occasionally asking for advice from Fran and never, ever taking it, Pruyn says. Their relationship developed after Melanie graduated and returned to Utah."Now that I know her as well as I do, I can't believe I ever actually thought I knew more than she did," Pruyn says.
Jerry Rapier, actor, producing director Plan-B Theatre Company, and Kirt Bateman, actor, executive director of Davis Arts Council)
Together » "On Valentine's Day, it'll be 14 years, 1 month and 17 days -- which is roughly a century in gay years," Rapier says.
Working in the same field » "It's nice to be able to vent to someone who understands how unique and frustrating the theater can be," Rapier says. "When we need to vent about each other, however, that gets a bit tricky! But that's balanced by not having to explain the energy the theater takes and give s. Sometimes the lines between personal and professional get a little fuzzy, yet neither of us can imagine navigating our respective careers without the colleague-partner-artist relationship we share."
How they met » Set up by a mutual friend. "The plan was for Kirt to see a show I was in and then we'd go out for nonthreatening, noncommittal coffee," Rapier says. "Well, my very-recent-ex was also in the audience, so there was some post-show lobby awkwardness. My ex and I talked, and Kirt was a more-than-good sport and waited patiently. Kirt got his coffee, and we moved in together two weeks later."
Deena Marie Manzanares, actor, model, and David Evanoff, owner, David Evanoff Sound Design, musician
Together » Started dating in spring 2005; will celebrate three-year wedding anniversary on April 13
Working in the same field » Met in 2005; he was musical director and she performed in Egyptian Theatre's "Jesus Christ Superstar." "We're so intertwined now," Manzanares says. "We balance each other's temperaments. I get high strung and stressed sometimes, but he can always calm me down. He's so patient. We are very, very lucky to be able to do what we love and do it together."
How they met » "I knew on our first date he was the man I was going to marry," Manzanares says. "He proposed on Halloween night, we married on a Friday the 13th. We never had official wedding pictures taken but we did just do our first photo shoot -- in a graveyard, of course!"
Chris Lino, managing director PTC, and Colleen Lindstrom, patron services manager
Together » Married 11 years
Working in the same field » Because the couple can talk out issues and problems over 24 hours, Lino believes he knows more about the day-to-day operation of the box office than most managing directors. While it can be difficult to leave work behind, Lindstrom has learned to say: "I just need to vent. Can I talk to you as my spouse?" "When she says this," Lino says, "I know that she wants to talk about what a horrible, insensitive, demanding and unreasonable managing director she has to work with."
How they met » In 1991, when Lino traveled from New York City to apply for the PTC job, Lindstrom picked him up at the airport. It wasn't exactly love at first sight: Turns out she was reserved, which led Lino to believe she liked another job candidate better. "It took about four years before I asked her out," he says, after the pair played together on a coed softball team. "Even after we started dating, it took me four years to persuade her to marry me."
Richard Scott, executive artistic director, Grand Theatre, and Michelle Peterson, actor, Utah Opera company manager
Together » Met in January 1997, married in September 1997
Working in the same field » "We understand the pressures the other is experiencing as it relates to acting and producing," Scott says. "We are able to help each other work through the rehearsal process as fellow actors working through choices. Schedules are extremely difficult and demanding -- lots of night work on top of the daytime responsibilities -- especially since the addition of our children."
How they met » Played opposite each other in Egyptian Theatre's "Talley's Folly." "Michelle claims that I locked her in the dressing room for two months until she agreed to my overtures," Scott says. "The play is a lovely exploration of two people making room for love in their lives. I'm happy to say that we did make room for each other, even if I had to talk her into it!"
Larry West, director, and Betsy West, actor
Together » Married 16 years
Working in the same field » "Upside? We share the same interests and passions and that provides us with some great discussions," Larry says. "Downside? After rehearsals, directors sometimes like to come home and vent about the actors, and actors like to come home and rag about their director. We weren't able to do that. Bonus: We go on theater vacations -- 10 shows in seven days in London; five shows in three days in New York City."
How they met » Larry, directing Salt Lake Acting Company's "Marvin's Room," planned to cast a woman whom he was interested in dating. Then he got a call from another actor, named Betsy, who turned out to be better for the role. "Horns of a dilemma here: Do I cast the actress who I was interested in dating -- who, incidentally was really good," Larry says, "or do I cast the better actress for the role? Well, I cast the better actress for the role and married her a year to the day of the opening."
Ginger Bess, actor, singer, and Daniel Simons, actor, director
Together » 7 1/2 years
Working in the same field » "We share something we both love to do and can support each other," Bess says, "because we understand the demands and passion."
How they met » Daniel was Ginger's "dream guy" while both were attending Weber State University and dating other people. "I would sit behind him in Music Theory class and blush," Bess recalls. Later they were both cast in Utah Musical Theatre's "Children of Eden," which led to a first kiss in Las Vegas in front of the Bellagio's water fountain. "He is my greatest reward and my best friend."