When I first met Jim, he had already been a Savoyard for numerous years. He had a lead role in Utopia, Limited, had been Music Director for The Pirates of Penzance and Princess Ida, been Assistant Music Director multiple times, and had also been Assistant Stage Manager. I was a “newbie” and considered him one of the fixtures of the company. As he gave his “the stage is a dangerous place” speech and was addressed as Mister Ravan, he quickly earned my respect.

In the summer of 2006, I got to know Jim as an actor in California Suite. The following summer, I joined him on stage in You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown. As the additional characters of Frieda and Pig Pen, we were paired together in numerous scenes. He quickly became a friend (and flirting-buddy).

As we all know, life can deal us challenges that affect our ability to keep up with the things we love. During our production of The Yeomen of the Guard in 2008, I was backstage rather than on-stage because of some of those challenges. Jim was Stage Manager, but when the Music Director was unable to fulfill his duties during performances, Jim immediately took up the conductor’s baton. He stepped into the pit in front of an unfamiliar orchestra because, as we all know in the theater, “the show must go on!” At that point, he quickly earned my admiration.

In recent years, Jim met Susan and a budding romance ensued. During that time I saw him blossom into a man of smiles and laughs. They both fell in love, and I was pleased to share their wedding celebration. At that point, he quickly gained a special place in my heart.

The Yeoman of Regard honor is bestowed upon individuals as a Life Achievement Recognition award. It is for “exemplary service in support of the mission of the Sudbury Savoyards.” It is with the greatest of pleasure that I present the 2017 Yeoman of Regard Award to a talented individual and my dear friend, James Ravan.

Laurel Martin
June 4, 2017

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