Todd joined the staff of Chester Theatre Company this past April, prior to the start of CTC’s 2012 summer season, Uncommon Love Stories. For more about Todd, read his biography here.
In my first five months, the most commonly asked question of me by members of our tight-knit CTC community has been, ”how did you first hear about CTC?”
I first heard about CTC from my friend, CTC Artistic Associate Daniel Elihu Kramer. Daniel told me that his show, pride@prejudice, was playing at CTC in July of 2011. Curious to see Daniel’s work and check out CTC, I decided to make the trip out to Chester from my home in Easthampton, MA.
My initial memories of that first visit are a series of incredibly sharp images, as if my subconscious knew I would return to Chester someday on a daily basis. I was struck by the beauty of the drive into the Berkshire’s foothills and the artfully-decaying “Welcome to Chester” sign (my favorite piece of Chester iconography). I was charmed by the quaint town hall, the orange glow of the evening mountain sky, and the silver, white-pawed cat that visited us during intermission (and who I have come to find out is a frequenter of the Chester Town Hall steps).
I loved the fast-paced rhythm and varying levels of pride@prejudice, as well as the well-constructed arch of the story’s creative retelling. The acting was top-notch with a strong sense of ensemble. I was intrigued by CTC itself – a high-quality, professional theatre situated in this little-known railroad town nicknamed (on my aforementioned favorite piece of Chester iconography), the “Gem of the Valley.” Rather than ignoring the space it was in, CTC worked with its circumstances, as all good artists and artistic institutions do. CTC was creating work that was both unique and effective, priding itself on its intimacy and quality – as it continues to do now.
I am looking forward to seeing CTC’s production of pride@prejudice again this October at Albany’s Capital Repertory Theatre. Opening September 28 and running through October 28, this will be our 17th production to transfer in the past 15 years, a remarkable feat for any theatre.
Interested in sharing your memories of Chester Theatre Company, first impressions or otherwise? Email me at email@example.com