The valley’s a stage | AspenTimes.com

The valley’s a stage

Dear Editor:

All of us in Thunder River Theater Company are deeply proud to have received the Henry Award from the Colorado Theater Guild naming Thunder River Theater the outstanding regional theater. The main criteria for the award was “How did your theater ‘raise the bar’ for Colorado theater?” I answered by speaking to Thunder River Theater’s play selection, original works and outreach. However, I couldn’t help but appreciate the theater talent in our valley and how everyone in our theater community strives to raise that bar.

So on behalf of Thunder River Theater, I share the significance of this award with our theater friends whose primary focus is to support the plethora of local talent in their own way: the Hudson Reed Ensemble, Aspen Community Theater, Aspen Stage, CMC Theater, the Aspen Fringe, Glenwood Vaudeville, and SoL Theater for kids.

I shared this sentiment each night as I welcomed our audience during our production of “Eudora’s Box” and again at the award ceremony in Denver. Thunder River Theater feels proud to be part of the Roaring Fork Valley’s theater family.

We would not be an award-winning operation without a theater, made possible by our building’s founders: Alpine Bank/J. Robert Young, Jim Calaway, the town of Carbondale, the Crossland Foundation, the Gates Family Foundation, the Kruidenier Charitable Foundation and Kathy and Dick Stephenson. And thanks to all of our donors and patrons from Aspen to Rifle who have supported us during our 18 years; to all our board members who understand and support Thunder River Theater’s vision and mission. Thunder River Theater has an amazingly dedicated audience who fill our theater for all events and makes our art complete.

We were told by the Colorado Theater Guild that one of the main reasons the scales tilted in Thunder River Theater’s favor was our outreach programming, which ensures that everyone has culture in their lives regardless of their ability to afford it. The guild recognized the contribution Thunder River Theater makes to the economic growth of our community and the support Thunder River Theater shows to the many other nonprofits, working side-by-side in improving the quality of life for all.

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Thank you, everyone. We hope you share in our pride.

Lon Winston

Founder and executive artistic director, Thunder River Theater

Carbondale