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Spotlight on the Un-Common Theatre Company: What Makes an Un-Common Production Uncommon?
The Un-Common Theatre Company, a production company founded in 1980, is truly unusual. We are one of the few children's theatre companies in New England that provides aspiring young actors, singers, musicians, and technicians an opportunity to work under the guidance of theatre professionals and perform in professional theater spaces. We are a non-profit volunteer organization which hires a variety of creative and technical personnel for each open auditioned production so as to expose our kids to various personalities and work environments.
Our vision is to develop the life skills of youth through the professional theatrical experience. The Un-Common Theatre Company seeks to develop children's confidence, self-esteem, teamwork and effective life skills.
Un-Common performs two to four shows a year at various locations in Mansfield and Foxboro, MA. Our teen improvisational comedy troupe, Improv Soup, performs monthly in Foxboro and at other local venues.
Our casts are made up of actors aged 6 to 21, coming from dozens of towns in Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Rhode Island.
Our Spring and Fall shows are performed at The Orpheum Theater in Foxboro, MA, after 10 weeks of rehearsals. Although generally full length musicals, we occasionally bring straight shows to this stage. The ages of each cast depends on the requirements of each show.
Our Young Performers Group was developed in 2004 to offer an opportunity for 1st - 6th graders to gain experience and confidence in a lower pressure environment, with performances in a local middle school and the opportunity to play major roles at a younger age. This show is also directed by a first-time director, usually a high school senior or recent college graduate, with most other production positions being filled by their peers. The process is supervised by experienced production managers.
Our Young Adults Group, formed in Summer 2005, is designed to offer 15 - 21 year olds an opportunity to be cast in cutting edge shows that they would not normally have an opportunity to be a part of at their age. This progra also requires all cast members to be an integral part of the production team so as to learn new skills and develop a full understanding of "putting on a show".
Our Improv Soup Troupe is audition-based, rehearses weekly and performs monthly. Auditions are held when current members graduate high school and replacement members are needed. We also offer Soup Jr., an Improv workshop for middle schoolers, taught by Improv Soup members.
We also offer opportunities for our alumni to remain a part of the Un-Common family by offering them positions in our production teams, as creative, administrative and technical team members.
Chris Lowey - President
Chris stumbled into the children's theatre world behind her daughter who was born singing, acting and dancing but now she can't imagine a life without it. She has been on the board of The Un-Common Theatre Company since 2002, was president for 4 1/2 years and is currently enjoying being Co-President. She has produced 10 shows with Un-Common and has met and worked with many talented kids from ages 5 - 21, directors, parents and tech crews. Chris's favorite part of working in youth theatre is watching kids (and adults) learn and grow from the wonderful process that is Children's Theatre.
Amy Van Dell - Co-President
Amy has been on the board of the The Un-Common Theatre Company for 5 years and is currently Co-President. She has lent her fundraising skills to create and build the membership program and special events as well as expand grant opportunities for UCT. Amy has also co-produced three Young Performers productions and will be producing this season's Wizard of Oz as well as the Young Performers Production. Having previously been a complete novice to the theatre world, she has thoroughly enjoyed working with the wonderful families and fellow board members.