New Bedford Theatre Group Has a New Home [TOWNSQUARE SUNDAY]
Finding a permanent home for Your Theatre in New Bedford has been a 10-year project but finally the search is over.
The newly-renovated Steeple Playhouse on William Street, which also includes space for parishioners of the historic First Baptist Church, opened its doors last month.
Community Liasion Eric Paradis joined Townsquare Sunday to discuss the decade-long journey to find a home and what's next for the community theatre company.
Your Theatre has been part of the New Bedford landscape for 77 years, with its members producing four to seven shows per year. For the past 20 years, the nonprofit theatre company has been sharing space at St. Martin's Church Hall on Rivet Street.
Paradis said having a permanent location at the Steeple Playhouse, which Your Theatre now owns, is amazing.
"We're very happy to be in the heart of the historic district downtown," he said. "We have a larger, more up-to-date and more comfortable theatre space for our patrons, actors and staff."
The Steeple Playhouse opened in November with Your Theatre's production of Agatha Christie's Murder on the Orient Express. Its next production will be A Doll's House: Part 2, with eight performances over two weekends beginning on January 19 through January 28. Paradis and his wife Caroline are cast in the lead roles.
Tickets are available by calling (508) 993-0772 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Paradis said the restoration of the First Baptist Church and the creation of the Steeple Playhouse would not have happened without a number of community partners, including the Waterfront Historic Area League (WHALE), the Mayor's Office, the Community Preservation Act, Mass Cultural Council, foundations and private donors.
"When you are a community theatre group, you don't have an endless checkbook, so it's difficult to build a kitty or get a mortgage," Paradis said. "But thanks to the work and generosity of our partners, we now have a multi-use performing arts center, not just for Your Theatre, but other groups as well."
Townsquare Sunday is a weekly community affairs program heard Sundays on WBSM.
If you would like your organization featured on Townsquare Sunday, please email the host at email@example.com.
The Gift of Giving: Local SouthCoast Charities
Gallery Credit: Ariel Dorsey