~Mission: to foster the artistic development
of the professional, emerging and community artist~
‘Theatre camp’ takes a final bow
A Theatre Group’s board of directors met three weeks ago to discuss the future of ATG and to reevaluate its many programs and priorities.
This past summer we celebrated 25 years of offering quality theatre to the community of Silverton and with the passing of that milestone came an opportunity to reconnect with and reinvigorate our identity as an important distinct voice in the region and beyond.
In the past several weeks we have tasked ourselves with a kind of organizational introspection, and though that process we agreed that in order to pave the way for a sustainable future we must make some significant changes.
The Silverton Summer Youth Program, affectionately known as “theatre camp,” will be shelved indefinitely in order for us to focus on stabilizing and reimagining our organizational mission: to foster the creative development of community, emerging and professional artists.
SSYP, a beloved program of A Theatre Group began in 1994 under the direction of University of Colorado theatre professor Carol Bloom and ATG’s founding artistic director Marianne Fearn. What Carol and Marianne created in those early years paved the way for a generation, from the very young, to college interns alike, to access their creative voice by making theatre together. It is important to note that the program has been made possible in part by the Town of Silverton and through the generosity of individual donors and loyal foundations.
I first came to Silverton in 1995 as a student from UC Denver and what I found here changed my life in more ways than I could have imagined. I learned what it meant to become a contributing member of a small
community and that creating art with young people wasn’t just a means to an end but a beautiful process in and of itself.
Time and time again former interns have shared with me how difficult it has been to match the magic of what they experienced working for SSYP. The familial connections Silverton’s kids have with each other, coupled with ATG’s unique way of approaching actor training allowed for some unforgettable and highly artistic youth productions over the years. Some of our favorite titles include: “Stone Soup,” “The Frog Prince,” “Alice in Wonderland,” “Annie,” “Peter Pan,” “The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe” and last year’s “Where the Wild Things Are.”
Our dedication to Silverton’s youth will remain central to what we do. Next year we will offer many exciting performance and technical opportunities to the youth of Silverton. We will continue to offer paid internship opportunities to college, junior high and high school students – and we will continue to produce quality youth-centered productions. Our primary focus will be to do what we do best: producing plays and developing new work. We are currently developing a new master class series, which will be taught by award winning playwrights, actors, musicians and artists of all kinds. Silverton’s youth will be central to this new vision.
This decision was not made lightly, but after careful consideration we believe this change will allow us to open up more avenues of creativity to ALL members of the community. We look forward to sharing this new vision with you.