For those captivated and inspired by the artistic role that community theatre forges within a community, Center State Theatre of the Midland Center for the Arts will present a rare opportunity to witness great community theatre from across the state of Michigan when it hosts the American Association of Community Theatre State Festival on February 4th & 5th.
Each participating troupe will present for adjudication a one-hour performance of their choosing. Approximately 100 individuals will travel to Midland to participate. Center Stage Theatre, as host, will present a revised version of Urinetown, featuring most of the original cast from the 2009 production. Tickets are $10 per session, with 2 to 3 productions per session, and are available at mcfta.org or by calling (800) 523-7649.
AACTFest provides an opportunity for community theatres from AACT's 10 regions to enter productions for adjudication and advancement from state to regional to national level.
The national festival, held in odd-numbered years, is June 20 – 26 in Rochester, New York, and will feature community theatre productions from across the country and the U.S. Armed Services in Europe. Over 600 people are expected to participate in the national competition.
“I’m really excited to be bringing to the festival a show that had so much energy and support around the original production,” says Bill Anderson, Jr, Urinetown director. “Urinetown is a great representation of MCFTA’s creative abilities.”
“We are thrilled to be hosting thespians from across the state at this year’s festival. This is a great opportunity to share with our fellow theatre lovers!” remarks Emily Anderson, Communications Coordinator for Center Stage Theatre.
AACT festivals are truly inspiring and exciting experiences.
If much of theatre involves honing the artistry of focus, this presentation poses an intriguing ‘test’. All the elements of each show must fit into a 10-foot square marked on the stage: set, props, musical instruments, costumes, and even the actors. The buzzer sounds and the first show is off and running. The actors in square #1 hustle to set up their show in 10 minutes - because that’s when their performance must start. They must end their piece no later than 60 minutes later, and then they have 10 minutes to put it all back in their box and leave the stage bare again.
Adjudicators present their opinions, offering insight and constructive ideas. Then - BUZZ! Show #2 is off and running, using every precious second of their 10-minute setup time. And so it goes, until all the entrants have given it their best.
Participating troupes start planning months before the state festival: choosing a play (or portion of a play) that lasts no more than 60 minutes, obtaining rights to perform, creating a budget, selecting a cast that is available for the festival, rehearsing, building a traveling set that can be erected in 10 minutes or less, performing for the fans at home, and securing funding for the adventure.
Shows presented are not subject to censorship of any kind. Ticket buyers are advised that any production may contain language and subject matter that is not suitable for children and may be considered offensive.
Friday, February 4 • 7 pm
The Farmington Players (Farmington Hills) – Boy Meets Girl: A Young Love Story
Holland Civic Theatre (Holland) – Ain’t Tina Turner Classical Music
Saturday, February 5 • 11:40 am
Old Town Playhouse (Traverse City) – Doubt
Center Stage Theatre (Midland) – Urinetown
Ichabod’s Little Theatre in the Hollow (South Haven) – Short Stuff
Saturday, February 5 • 7:50 pm
Players de Noc (Escanaba) – The Pillowman
Monroe Community Players (Monroe) – The Crucible
Center Stage Theatre (formerly Theatre Guild and Music Society) is one of the most successful and exciting community theatre companies in the Midwest. Center Stage Theatre continues to present high quality plays, musical theatre, children’s theatre, and programs of community service, theatre classes and workshops in the Great Lakes Bay Region.