Mountain Mayhem: The Big 4-0 for ACT
November 17, 2016
Every fall for 40 years now, Aspen Community Theatre (ACT) has hosted auditions in September for performances in November. The beloved non-profit celebrated its benchmark anniversary last week with "40 Years of Laughter and Tears," an original production reflecting on the past four decades onstage. ACT's Mike Monroney, a longtime pillar of the organization, penned the Broadway-style show, bringing scores of current and long since retired ACT members onboard to perform or share their stories.
Shows took place at the Aspen District Theatre, featuring tributes by video, individual testimonials over microphone, solo performances and ensemble cast numbers. All dressed in black or black and white onstage, including the chorus, while the red set was shaped in the numbers 4 and 0 that were turned throughout the production, serving as elevated staging.
As the tales unfolded of auditions, lifechanging parts, audience reactions and more, it was evident the company has made an impact on a large pool of talent over the past 40 years. The breadth of talent from members of our community was what touched me the most.
As I got to watch a dress rehearsal with my 3-year old son, we both identified with familiar faces onstage. He waved the entire first act to his music teacher who had a part in the show. Naturally, she didn't see him under the lights, but as he continued to signal her with admiration, it reinforced to me how the talent gracing the stage also makes contributions to our community in their everyday roles.
If you enjoyed this show, it's worth visiting other theaters in the valley to see more, such as Thunder River Theatre Company, Theatre Aspen, and the Glenwood Vaudeville Review who have shows throughout the year.
And though ACT's 40th anniversary production may be over (the encore performance was on Sunday night), they welcome any and all stories you may have to share from your own experiences with them. If so, send your memories to firstname.lastname@example.org
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