Panel: “Operational and communications problems must be remedied” at The Lost Colony

[Photo courtesy The Lost Colony]

A new report has been released by the producers of The Lost Colony outdoor drama analyzing challenges and addressing complaints from cast, crew and even alumni during the 2021 season.

The Board of Directors of the Roanoke Island Historical Association received the report Saturday, prepared by the Community Relations Committe, charied by Tess Judge of Kitty Hawk, along with members Lucy Inman of Raleigh, Gary Pearce of Raleigh and Nags Head and David Woronoff of Pinehurst.

According to the news release issued Monday, the committee was appointed in September to review concerns about the 84th season of the nation’s longest-running outdoor drama.

“By every external measure, the 2021 season was a success. Revenue, ticket sales and audience numbers hit levels not seen in nearly a decade. Average nightly attendance increased almost 20 percent – to 646 from 540 in 2019. The audience averaged over 600 per night for the first time since 2013. Gross ticket revenue increased 25 percent, despite fewer shows than 2019 due to weather and the Covid-related cancellation of the final week of the season.”

The committee hosted a two-hour Zoom meeting on September 24 to hear concerns from alumni representatives. The committee also received and reviewed more than 40 letters forwarded by the alumni expressing concerns.

According to Monday’s press release, the panel made three primary findings:

  • “There were operational and communications problems that must be remedied next season.”
  • “There were a number of concerns and criticisms regarding creative aspects of the show. These should be communicated to the Director for his consideration in developing the 2022 production.”
  • “Some of the allegations were unfounded. They did not stand up to scrutiny.”

The committee also gave its analysis of the show’s current leadership:

“We concluded that Chairman Kevin Bradley, General Manager John Ancona and Director Jeff Whiting acted appropriately under difficult circumstances. The board can be proud of their performance. They deserve our gratitude for their hard work and for making this season successful despite many challenges.”

A full copy of the Community Relations Committee’s report is posted at

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