Sunday, December 20, 2015

December 2015 Curtain Call

Season 2015 has been challenging and productive, and memorable for some ground-breaking accomplishments. We opened our black box theatre with both adult and youth productions, Cactus Flower and The Last Romance, and The Light in the Mill and Rikki Tikki Tavi. Rockin’ at the Hop and Fences rehearsed at the Center and played to appreciative audiences in the Gretna Movie Theatre.
We initiated the Coffee House Series on occasional Saturday evenings with music, comedy, and magic, and celebrated the Strawberry and Wine Festival, Gretna Fest, and Old Timers Jubilee with activities for youth, and book signings for authors.
The progress made on the renovation of the Center for the Arts was due to the dedication and creative spirit of Charles and Theresa Converse, to whom we owe much, and will miss in months to come. Charlie joined us in 2014 as set carpenter, but quickly spread his enthusiasm to the remodeling of the main rehearsal hall into the green and maroon black box we now have. The Converses have relocated to Tennessee but have left behind many personal items for the scene shop and furniture inventory as they downsized.
In summer of 2015 we were given a substantial donation by an “angel” which enabled us to purchase construction material for Center projects, specifically the new bathrooms, additional stage lighting equipment, a projection system, and updating electrical service. After a year-long fund-raising campaign and raffle, we bought a new roof, and increased our comfort with heating and air conditioning.
We enter 2016 with a full schedule of plays (attached in a separate letter) with several directors, and with opportunities for new set designers and builders to join us. Our production calendar includes a four-week youth theatre workshop for after school participation in late spring. We hope to attract volunteer musicians, especially pianists, for a musical concert performance.
We appreciate all volunteers for every position in the theatre, on-stage, back-stage, front-of-house, scene shop, and enlarge our call for volunteer contractors to join us in the continuing renovation of the Center for the Arts. There is room for every creative person who subscribes to this newsletter to participate in the coming season.
During December, GLT solicits patrons and sponsors to contribute for the coming year. We are a 501 (c) 3 organization, and every dollar is a tax exemption. The following letter has been mailed to businesses and organizations in the Greater Gretna area. Please consider joining our sponsors with monetary or in-kind donations.
This last season we presented the majority of our productions in the Center in our “Black Box” theatre setting. With fifty seats, we have intimate seating for our audience which improves both sight and sound. With wing space on both sides of the acting area, we improve backstage activity – storing props, wardrobe changes, better control of stage effects. And we are adding more theatrical peripherals – lighting, sound effects, scenic elements – this coming season.
The 2016 schedule begins with Joseph Kesserling’s Arsenic and Old Lace, a favorite community theatre comedy; then Ira Levin’s melodrama, Dr Cook’s Garden, followed by   The Miracle Worker, William Gibson’s dramatization of Helen Keller and Annie Sullivan’s early experience. Two comedies are coming in the fall, Pat Cook’s Stealing Home by the same playwright who gave us Those Crazy Ladies, and Noel Coward’s delightful Blithe Spirit.
A summer youth workshop, George Dibdin Pitt’s The String of Pearls, is the 18th century play about Sweeney Todd from which Stephen Sondheim and Tim Burton fashioned their respective hits. Students of all ages are encouraged to be a part of this four week experience.
As sponsors, Gretna businesses and individuals are valuable partners with the community theatre in Pittsylvania County. We do apply for grants and have been successful in partial funding of our activities. However, to continue providing an entertainment and social venue, we encourage the participation of donors. Your generous support helps to pay the bills so that we may continue to offer this creative art to students of all ages, and to audiences of Greater Gretna at lower ticket prices than surrounding theatres.
To honor your participation, every sponsor/donor is listed in our production programs and also on our website. We hope you will send a tax-deductible contribution to this non-profit organization. Please send a check to Treasurer, Gretna Little Theatre, 209 Mountain Top Court, Lynch Station, VA 24571.
Janina Shoemaker                                                                   Deborah Price Moran
Executive Director                                                                  President, Board of Directors
Please include a note with your sponsor/donor check in reference to which package you would like to sponsor.
_______Platinum Sponsor Any amount above $250 which includes your name listed in the programs of the plays and on our website. Also two patron/season tickets
_______Gold Sponsor $250 donation which includes your name listed in the programs of the plays and on our website. Also two patron/season tickets
_______Silver Sponsor $150 donation which includes your name listed in the programs of the plays and on our website. Also one patron season ticket
_______Bronze Sponsor $100 donation which includes your name listed in the programs of the plays and on our website. Also one patron season ticket
_______Friends $50 donation which includes your name listed in the programs of the plays and on our website
Volunteer workers especially needed.
In-Kind Donations of building materials or services (paint, carpentry, plumbing or electrical services,) which will be acknowledged in the play programs and on our website. Also patron season tickets.

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