RIDGEFIELD, Conn., April 23, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — Fairfield County residents will soon be able to experience the best of Broadway without leaving their backyards. Debuting in June, ACT of Connecticut (A Contemporary Theatre), a new premier regional Equity theater, will bring Broadway-caliber productions to the area. Three accomplished Broadway professionals and Ridgefield locals, Katie Diamond, Daniel C. Levine and Bryan Perri, founded ACT of CT with a mission to help make their community a true “arts destination” by creating this state-of-the-art professional theater.
ACT of CT will present limited engagement runs of well-known Broadway productions – three musicals and one play, per season. Its opening show, “Mamma Mia!,” will take the stage this June and star several well-known Broadway celebrities, including one of the cast members from the original production. Tickets are currently available online.
“The opportunity to bring Broadway performers, directors, choreographers and music directors to Ridgefield to create theatre is so inspiring,” says ACT of CT Executive Producer Katie Diamond. “We can’t wait to open our doors so that our community can experience this level of entertainment.”
“Given our proximity to New York City, we have access to world-class talent in the theater industry,” adds ACT of CT Artistic Director Daniel C. Levine. “We intend to utilize Broadway professionals, along with the talents of our local residents, to bring the highest caliber theater to Fairfield County.”
A Broadway Who’s Who
ACT of CT’s prestigious board of directors and artistic advisory board include a veritable cast. Individuals like Larry Morley (a technical director at Radio City Music Hall) and Jack Mehler (a high profile scenic and lighting designer) sit on the board of directors. Academy Award® winner Stephen Schwartz (composer of “Godspell,” “Pippin” and “Wicked”) serves as artistic advisor, along with Tony Award®-winning designer Beowulf Borit and Tony Award®-winning actor Christian Borle.
“Ridgefield has come such a long way toward becoming an arts destination,” says Stephen Schwartz, ACT of CT artistic advisor. “The addition of a professional Equity theatre is exciting, and one that I support wholeheartedly.”
The theater is housed in the newly renovated Schlumberger auditorium, a part of Philip Johnson’s famous Schlumberger building. ACT of CT’s objective to provide an unparalleled community building experience will be accomplished via a nearly $1.8 million renovation, where guests are encouraged to come early and stay later to enjoy the venue’s upscale, mid-century modern lobby and bar. The theater itself provides an intimate viewing environment, with 174 seats and a turntable (rotating) stage – an innovative feature in today’s arts and entertainment arena. ACT of CT’s permanent turntable is the only stage of this type in the region, with the exception of some of NYC’s theaters.
Beyond the Productions
Its New Works program will premiere the work of the next generation of writers and composers, educating the community on the creation of a Broadway-caliber show. This will enable Fairfield and Westchester communities to play a role in developing Broadway’s rising stars and, potentially, the next big hit.
In addition to fully-produced main stage productions, ACT of CT will also offer youth education, high school programs and an extensive masterclass series. Broadway professionals will lead classes, camps, workshops and a high school conservatory program, providing technical, in-depth instruction and early exposure to the theater industry. The programs aim to nurture Broadway’s future talent.
About ACT of Connecticut (A Contemporary Theatre)
ACT of Connecticut (A Contemporary Theatre) is a nonprofit 501(c)(3), premier Equity theater located in the renowned Schlumberger auditorium in Ridgefield, CT. Founded and led by three accomplished theater professionals, the contemporary theater will present limited engagement runs of well-known Broadway plays and musicals, as well as world premiere plays and musicals by the next generation of writers and composers. The theater company is expected to produce four shows per season, each show featuring both NYC Broadway and local Fairfield and Westchester County talent. In addition to fully-produced main stage productions, ACT of CT will host youth education classes, masterclasses, camps, workshops and a conservatory program for high school students.