Alumni!

Hello Theater Project Fans/Parents/Alumni!

Summer is a weird time for us, a transition period.  The building is full, nearly everyday, of kids and of energy.  This energy will subside for the next few weeks, until our 2018-2019 Season begins.  It’s always exciting, and a little sad, as we move forward to the next season and say goodbye to the new round of alumni.

One reason for our success each year is the support of alumni.  You send your kids to take camps and classes, you donate what you can when you can, and most importantly, you come back to see our shows each year.  So THANK YOU, for all of that!

Right now, we have a couple of exciting things going on, specifically for alumni but really, for anyone:

1:  The McGuires are performing an improv show on Saturday, August 18th.  Their opening act will be The Adolfs. So that’s TWO Theater Project Families, on stage, for one night only.  It will be a great night, so please consider being there!

2:  Alumni T-Shirts.  At the last show of Voices this past season, director Karin Baard presented the graduating seniors with Alumni shirts.  This “ceremony” will be repeated year after year now… but if you are an alumni, you can buy a t-shirt with your year on it!  These were designed by Sean McGuire (of the aforementioned McGuires), and can be customized with your year. Please shoot us an email or Facebook message if you’re interested in one of these.  They will be 25$ and we are waiting for a few more interested parties before ordering…

 

Thank you for being with us this summer, and please keep an eye out for our Season Announcement coming soon!

 

Amanda DeHahn

Program Manager

Summer Camps are Underway!

The temperatures and humidity are here, our 46th season has ended with another rip-roaring production of Voices in the Mirror, and that means ... summer camps! 

Summer camps are one of my favorite times of the year (but when you work at The Theater Project, what time of year isn't your favorite time of year?). But camps are special; spending most of your day in the theater, producing shows in only two weeks, LOTS of theater (and other) games - Stone Lions, anyone? Always my fav. - and more. 

Our summer camp season kicked off last week with "Mystery Solvers Agency" - our first camp for 6 - 8 year olds. My rocking co-teachers and I had an energetic group of 22 kids who were more than ready to explore the theater, solve mysteries, and develop some foundational theater skills. We solved mysteries like what my favorite animal is (raccoon) and how old Maggie is (16 - though we had some great guesses from 8 to 43). Throughout the week we worked on using our bodies (no words!) to express something to the audience - either a gesture, emotion, picture, anything our imaginations could come up with - as well as working together as a team to create an original story. 

We talked about our primary ground rule "respect" - respecting each other, teachers and campers alike, respecting the building, and one suggestion from a camper that I've never heard before but I LOVE: respecting the audience. We talked about how respecting the audience meant not goofing off during a performance and giving the best performance you can because they've come to see a great show and when we goof off and ruin the magical illusion of theater that can be disrespectful to our audience. Isn't that great? One of the best things about working with children is when we learn new things. 

And of course, summer camps give us adults and teachers a time and place to let our imaginations loose a little bit and get into the spirit of the season. Like below, where we teachers couldn't help but put some costumes on (it looked like too much fun!).

Happy summer everyone! 

Karin

 

IMG_1233.JPG

An Adventure for All...

"The Hobbit" is our first of two production camps to be held this summer.  

What goes into a production camp? Two weeks of hard work, exploration, and natural comedic genius.  The campers adventure with their director to learn a script and develop characters.  They're introduced to props, costumes, lights, and sound.  All of these things combine into a performance just like the Professional shows we produce.

Director Robbie Harrison has big plans for the campers:

“The Hobbit” camp is approaching, and all adventurous souls are invited to hit the stage and make this story come alive. As director, I’m learning the script and dreaming up structures, characters, and theatrical beats that can breathe fire into this epic play. What you can look forward to: being goofy, befriending a dragon, and re-creating this classic story for your friends and family."

This show is produced by special arrangement with THE DRAMATIC PUBLISHING COMPANY of Woodstock, Illinois.

If you're interested in seeing this show, tickets can be bought through our website, or by calling the box office at 729-8584.

Screen Shot 2018-06-30 at 9.55.28 AM.png

On Friendship, Clowning and Waiting for Godot

Nat Warren-White is a longtime friend of The Theater Project - he was here at the very beginning, in fact! Here he shares some thoughts on getting together with old friends to put on a theater classic....

                                                                *****

Ahhhhhhh, the "early days" days in South Paris were magical! Tony Montanaro was a brilliant teacher with a magician's touch and we were all his "kids". I met Al around the same time in the early 70's. He'd created the YPT (Young People's Theater) just before I moved back to Maine and we became good friends and clowning partners. I was fortunate to be included in the YPT merry band of roaming thespians directing a number of shows, touring in the van from one end of Maine to the other and loving every minute of it.

Eventually Al, Christine Cantwell, and I formed a trio of clowns (*CLOWNS*) and we toured Maine schools together having a ball entertaining kids and leading workshops with adults and children alike.

Al & I attended one of Tony's summer intensive mime workshops bunking at the Celebration Barn, eating locally grown food, lolling about in the fields, and falling in love with the crew of itinerant fools who'd migrated to South Paris under Tony's loving touch. I eventually joined Tony's production of "Pinocchio" which toured the east coast from New Orleans to New Jersey in an old blue Ford station wagon. A year or two later a couple of spots opened-up in the Celebration Mime Ensemble and I was lucky enough to be assigned a green unitard and romp with Tony's larger troupe of happy players. Fateh Azzam (then known only as "Victor") was already a member of "the company" and we became good pals, haunting Minnie's Bar-B-Q in Market Square, South Paris when while living in town and rehearsing at The Barn. Minnie was our god-mother and Tony was our later god-father. It was a creative and joyous time and we developed some wonderful material and lasting friendships under Tony's deft direction.

About the same time I met Fateh I also met Elizabeth Warren (no not the senator but the amazing early childhood teacher) when our clown troupe performed at her school in Harpswell. We got married in 1977 and shortly thereafter took a hands-on building class at the Shelter Institute in Woolwich. Christopher Price was our inspired teacher there and quickly became our good friend too. We never built our dream home but did manage to shanghai Chris into becoming an actor at the Summer Theater Project which was formed under Al's fearless leadership in the Brunswick U-U church in the late 70's. Several of the old Celebration folks joined us for those early hot and crazy summers and the circle closed. In the years since Al, Chris, Fateh and I have stayed in-touch and occasionally found time to work and play together in various theatrical endeavors....but never all together in one place or the same piece. We've all dreamed about and plotted to revisit GODOT after each of us had discovered it earlier in our lives. Now we are the right age to understand it in the way Beckett intended it (if we can only remember the words!)

Thanks to Al's vision and Davis Robinson's (another ex-Celebration bandit) insightful and empathic direction, we've all found our way together again 40 years later at the Theater Project....amazing, scary, thrilling, humbling.

Thank you Al and thank you David, Fateh, Chris, Nick (our "Boy") and, of course, Sammy B!

Love, GoGo