Thursday, July 30, 2015 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Friday, July 31, 2015 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Saturday, Aug. 1, 2015 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Friday, Aug. 7, 2015 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Saturday, Aug. 8, 2015 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Location: Center Theatre, E Main St., Dover Foxcroft , Maine
For more information: 207-564-8943; centertheatre.org
Some of Piscataquis’ County’s most talented young actors, ages 6-19 will come together for a spectacular portrayal of the classic tale “Beauty & the Beast” under the direction of a very talented 17 year old student from Dover Foxcroft.
A theatrical performance is no small endeavor. From paying for rights to the story, to raising funds to cover expenses, to casting, stage production, design and build, costume design, 6 weeks of rehearsals, one week of tech, lighting, props and marketing, and entire team of talented people is typically needed.
That is, of course, unless you are Mitchell Chasse. This young man fell in love with theater at the age of 6 when he attended a performance of Cinderella at Foxcroft Academy. Less than two years later, he starred in his first show. His love for the stage began with acting, and grew from there, until Mitchell became skilled in every area of theater and some might argue, a young ‘expert’ in what it takes to run a successful show. So much so that Mitchell formed his own production company in 2012, “Mitchell Chasse Productions”.
Today, Mitchell is 17 years old and is in production for what will be his 35th show: “Beauty and the Beast Jr.” is a Mitchell Chasse Production. Mitchell hand-picked and cast each actor/actress, is the director, stage manager, light designer, choreographer and costume designer/builder (yes, he actually created the costumes, 70 of them to be exact), and also carries the responsibility of promoting the show. As a side-note, though Mitchell gleaned his experience from years of being on stage, he is very quick to name Rhonda Kirkpatrick as his mentor and teacher for costume design & creation, who made it possible for Mitchell to intern at the Western Stage, an acclaimed regional theater in Salinas, CA in 2014. She continues to work with Mitchell when he needs help on a costume or a design.
The budget for this production is $10,000 which covers the rights to the show, the rental of the theater, the costumes and the marketing. The budget is met by using proceeds from prior shows and through the generosity of local sponsors. Mitchell is deeply thankful for businesses and organizations who have made this possible, which as of July 7th are: Foxcroft Printing and Sign, Nor’easter Restaurant, McKusick Petroleum, Lary Funeral Home, Chasse Chiropractic; Goulette’s IGA, The Bear’s Den Restaurant and Pub, Mayo Regional Hospital, Sebasticook Family Doctors, Rowell’s Garage, Bangor Savings Bank, Pastimes Pub and Foxcroft Catering Co. , and the Piscataquis Chamber of Commerce.
“My dad (Kevin Chasse) does so much to bring in the sponsorships, I am so thankful for him. My mom Linmarie Goulette is also very supportive, decorating and preparing the lobby and assisting with ticket sales, and my step-dad Barry (Goulette’s IGA) helps as set builder. I could not do this without them.”
Growing up in a small community like Dover Foxcroft has given Mitchell opportunities he would not have otherwise had in larger cities. Center Theatre, an iconic , community centered non-profit, opens its doors affectionately to young talent. Local businesses support the arts. Even in this rural community, everyone comes together to invest in young lives that love the stage, and make it possible for this local student to gain all the experience he needs to follow his dreams, perhaps all the way to Broadway.
Beauty and the Beast Jr.:
Center Theatre, Dover Foxcroft
July 30 at 7 PM
July 31 at 7 PM
August 1 at 2 PM and 7 PM
August 7 at 7 PM
August 8 and 2 PM and 7 PM
To purchase tickets visit centertheatre.org/events or call 564-8943
Presales: $10 Adults and $8 for Kids
At the Door: $12 Adults and $10 for Kids
The Board of Directors and staff of the Center Theatre sadly announces the resignation of Jayne Lello as the Coordinator of the Center Theatre Children’s Summer Drama Camp.
Founded in 1998, the Children’s Summer Drama Camp was the first program created by the Center Theatre. Before the restoration of the downtown building had even begun, Drama Camp was already encouraging arts education in the region. As more educational opportunities have become available to the youth of Piscataquis County, Drama Camp has continued to flourish under Lello’s knowledge and passion.
According to Patrick Myers, the Theatre’s founding Executive Director, “Jayne Lello and the Children’s Summer Drama Camp were cornerstones of the Center Theater well before we turned the marquee back on. Both the Camp and the Center Theatre itself are a testament to Jayne’s dedication and devotion to the positive impact the arts can have on children.”
Now preparing for its 18th year, Drama Camp has been a place where numerous local and visiting children have spent their summers, many for multiple summers in row. It has been a place where children have been given a chance to learn, to grow, and explore theatre in a safe environment. For some, it has changed their lives. According to Tammy Parker, whose daughter Rebeclyn is a regular on the Center Theatre stage, “Center Theatre Drama Camp was Rebeclyn’s first theatrical experience six years ago. Not only has camp been a place where she can connect with friends each year, but a place where she can truly celebrate her love for theatre. When she was younger, it was an important place for her-it was an environment where she felt comfortable, and where she where she could be herself and learn to express her feelings in a positive way.” Rebeclyn, however, is more direct. “Drama Camp has completely changed my life!”
“It is hard enough to keep a theatre program running for just a couple of years,” says previous Executive Director Angela Bonacasa, “and to have one that runs for almost two decades is a true testament to Jayne, her vision, and the people she has brought on board to teach with her. Although she is leaving in an official capacity, she will always be a part of Drama Camp. A positive and fun learning environment are hallmarks of Drama Camp, and Jayne’s hand-picked replacement will keep those qualities while bringing her own special gifts to the mix.”
The new Drama Camp Coordinator, Beth Dyer MacNeil, has been a life long resident of Guilford. She graduated from the University of Maine at Machias in 2002 with a B.A. in History with a minor in American Studies, Women’s Studies, and a concentration in secondary education. She has over 10 years in public education teaching children in a variety of subjects across ability levels. Beth utilizes her creative side by designing and publishing the Piscataquis Community High School yearbook, creating numerous parade floats for the Guilford River Festival, and photographing high school sporting and social events.
The two session dates are June 29-July 10, and July 13-24. Camp runs 9 AM-1 PM Monday-Friday, with a final performance at 6 PM at the Center Theatre on the final Friday of each session. Session one will be performing Peter Rabbit and will be directed by Bobby Keniston. Session two will perform Toby Tyler and will be directed by David Murray. There are still slots available for either session. For more information, please call the Center Theatre at 564-8943 or stop by the Theatre at 20 East Main Street, Dover-Foxcroft between the hours of 10 AM and 3 PM Monday through Friday. You can also visit the Center Theatre website at www.CenterTheatre.org The Center Theatre is a non profit performing arts center dedicated to making the arts a part of life in the Maine Highlands.