Hampton Beach Casino Ballroom - Going Back Stage

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1899 - 1999

Myth vs. Reality

There is in the world of rock and roll a place that occupies some of the largest space in that industry's mythology. It is the place called "backstage" and we've all heard stories about it. Those golden moments, either real or imagined, where you, a friend, or a friend of a friend were able to go backstage. The tales conjure up images of being connected to something larger than life. There are stories of wild parties and other glamorous and fabled rock and roll incidents.
Dresssing Room

Dressing room at Hampton Beach Casino.
[Photograph by Ralph Morang.]

It's different for every venue, but at the Casino, what most of the acts want, before and after they go on stage, is just a little peace and quite.

The two room backstage area is actually "very modest," points out Cindy Burke, the assistant general manager of the Casino. It is the one place people seem to want to go to the most." In part because there is this mythology about it."

There is something about being in the same room, or breathing the same air that has been occupied by your favorite performing artist, Burke recognizes, but what she finds the acts wanting to do most is sit.

General Manager Fred Schaake Jr. points out that comedian George Carlin likes to have the lights turned down low, and to have the place relatively quiet.

It's just a small room, with white walls, and arrows are actually painted on the floor so the artists do not get lost as they navigate the brief labyrinth to get to the stage, but still....it is, after all, a place where George Carlin has actually sat!

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