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    Categories: Entertainment

Children’s theatre marks 30th anniversary with show tomorrow

It’s hard to believe that it started up even before it had the Arden Theatre to call home.

The city’s premier acting troupe is celebrating its 30th anniversary with a party tomorrow night called It’s About Time: Celebrating 30 Years of St. Albert Children’s Theatre. That adds up to a whole lot of reminiscing to accomplish in just a few hours, especially when you consider how many people give credit to the St. Albert Children’s Theatre for launching their careers in performance, or at least just giving them a creative outlet during their formative years.

There are more than 4,000 people who went through the program under the tutelage of artistic director and founder Maralyn Ryan, or successors John B. Lowe and Janice Flower, the current head.

“When planning a celebration it is always a challenge to gather so many talented people in one place at one time,” Flower stated, obviously thrilled the response from alumni was so positive and that so many could make a special trip back to St. Albert to participate in the celebration.

While its first production of The Hobbit took place in 1981, it was actually born five years earlier when the city’s newly established cultural services department discovered a need for children’s programming. A few years later a cultural leadership co-ordinator was hired to focus on the task that resulted in Imaginings, St. Albert’s first summer drama program for kids.

It’s About Time will be like a grand trip down memory lane featuring scenes from many of its 75 productions. Some of the troupe’s graduates who are scheduled to perform include Dan Abrahamson, Kevin Cripps, Jenna Dykes-Busby, Jeff Moulton, Kate Ryan, Bridget Ryan, Dave Frise, Michelle Sabourin, Celina Stachow and Ken Stewart. There are many other names on the billet though, including current members.

“Whether performing on Broadway, touring the world in various productions, writing the next great musical or teaching the next musical star, our alumni represent so many wonderful facets of the performing arts community around the world.”

The reunion of stories and songs takes place tomorrow evening at 7:30 p.m. at the Arden Theatre. Tickets are $30 for adults and $20 for children and can be purchased at the Arden box office during regular hours or online at www.ardentheatre.com.

For more information about St. Albert Children’s Theatre, call 780-459-1695 or visit www.sact.ca.

Scott Hayes: Scott Hayes joined the St. Albert Gazette in 2008. Scott writes about the arts, entertainment, movies, culture, community groups, and charities. He also writes general news, features, columns and profiles on people.