From its inception, 30 years ago, as a small choir known as the Alexander Singers, the Alexander Showcase Theatre has since expanded into an award-winning troupe of musicians, actors, choreographers and producers.
Ian Scott, actor and treasurer for the troupe, describes it as an ideal proving ground for budding thespians, a place where beginners can take on their first roles or simply expand their skills within a professional environment.
When asked about joining the theatre over 20 years ago, Scott recalls his rather unusual first audition. He had recently retired and time weighed heavily on his hands. His wife, Clayton Scott (E.G. Burton’s first grandchild, a gifted pianist and teacher who also lectures on ballet and opera) informed him one day that he had been scheduled for an audition later that afternoon. With a background of singing solely for his family’s own amusement, Scott faced the ordeal of a real audience armed with the only theatre-oriented tune that came to mind: Music of the Night. He says he was both surprised and relieved when a fellow performer, Marco, in response to AST founder Angela Hawaleshka’s question about how ”the new guy was doing,” replied succinctly: “He’s one of us.” With those few words, Scott found a sense of belonging.
The AST at that time was using a small church as a rehearsal space. While no single room could contain a full staging, the troupe found that performance components could be divided amongst various rooms. “It was dynamic,” says Scott. “Everybody just knew where they needed to be and when they needed to move.” The group now rehearses in a more spacious synagogue, but Scott added that it carries on the tradition of using every spatial element possible, staging multiple scenes in every unoccupied room, staircase and hallway.
Its efforts and mildly unconventional methods haven’t gone unrewarded. In 2016, the Alexander Showcase Theatre received Broadway World’s Best Community Theatre Production Award for their performance of The Addams Family. While Scott was naturally delighted, he maintains that the show wasn’t “extraordinary in our lexicon of productions,” which has expanded in recent years to include both musicals and dramas.
The AST’s next production will be the Broadway rendition of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s musical Cinderella, slated for public performance in spring 2022, Covid circumstances permitting. Even during the height of the pandemic, the company has continued its rehearsals online, making this play the by-product of over two years’ effort from 35 individual actors. Although Scott can’t go into detail about the new production, he assures us that “the musical and stage directors pick shows that will appeal to a broad group,” adding that it was going to be “a hoot,” good entertainment for all ages.
A list of showtimes and audition schedules (for future productions) can be found at www.alexandershowcasetheatre.com . The Alexander Showcase Theatre’s doors are always open to enthusiastic entertainers and audiences alike.
Alexander Showcase Theatre in an exciting not-for-profit theatre group with a commitment to creating high quality, high energy theatrical productions. The AST family supports the education and development of aspiring performers and technical crew while making magic happen, both on stage and off.
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