Director Paul R. Tetreault Remembers Senator Harry Reid

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Senator Harry Reid enjoyed the theatre. He and his beloved wife Landra attended many of our productions and rather than being interested in the fanfare of opening nights, he simply enjoyed attending plays. He and Landra would often bring many of their grandchildren to the annual production of A Christmas Carol. He also really enjoyed the dramatic productions—especially those by August Wilson. He would often go up to New York City to see an August Wilson play, and then regale me later on the brilliance of the play and the production.

Photo of Senator Harry Reid, Paul R. Tetreault and Landra Reid at Ford's Theatre.
Photo of Senator Harry Reid, Ford's Theatre Director Paul R. Tetreault and Landra Reid.

Though Senator Reid wasn't keen on putting on a tuxedo and disliked attending fancy galas, he rarely missed a Ford's Theatre Annual Gala weekend and attended this annual event for more than a decade with Landra who served on the Ford's Theatre Board of Trustees from 2005-2018. When Landra was recovering from a health issue and was unable to attend our gala one year, Harry attended our annual event accompanied by one of his grandchildren. I asked him why he attended since I knew Landra would be home recovering. He declared, "I am here for Landra and to show our support and devotion to Ford's!" They worked tirelessly to support our organization and to help advance the important work we do in reaching diverse audiences all over the country.

Of course, I like many would have conversations with the Senator on the phone, and as soon as the conversation was done, Harry was gone—no “goodbye," no “so-long," no “see you at the theatre”—just a dial-tone. He was famous for this and I was honored to be treated like friends, colleagues and even the president of the United States.

Senator Reid laughs with Paul Tetreault and Wayne Reynolds.
Senator Harry Ried, Paul Tetreault and Wayne Reynolds (former Chairman of the Board, Ford’s Theatre Society). Photo by Reflections Photography, Washington, D.C.

I will miss Senator Reid and that darn “dial-tone” as will his Ford’s Theatre family. Our hearts and thoughts go out to Landra and the entire Reid family.

Rest in Peace.

Paul R. Tetreault is Director of Ford's Theatre. Senator Harry Reid passed away on December 28, 2021.