All too often, we see non-profits and community-based organizations succumb to the pressures of doing business and the economy, even in spite of their talent, vision and mission to serve that community. Rarely do we see the leadership of an organization look inward to make drastic changes in order to reinvent themselves to better serve their community. But that is exactly what Actors Theatre has done. By initiating a pause, the organization's leadership of Matthew Wiener and Erica Black took a huge step back to look at every aspect of the organization, and sometimes with great pain, making huge changes to stabilize the organization for its future.
As we see Actors Theatre emerge from this pause, the community of metro Phoenix is seeing just how brilliant these efforts are. The Actors Theatre stage is once again the center of attention with the performance of A Steady Rain (by Keith Huff and directed by Anthony Runfels). With an appropriate parallel to the organization itself, the stage set is minimal, containing only what is needed to support the incredible script. And, as the name "Actors Theatre" suggests, the actors are the theater.
Actors Theatre is truly the most powerful theatre in Phoenix.
For me, the quicker a cast can involve me in the story - the sooner I forget that I am in the audience - the better the show. It was only seconds into last nights performance of THIS by Actors Theatre at Herberger Theatre Center that I magically left my seat and became consumed by the story.
The cast took an incredible script and presented it with brilliance, on a well designed set with the guidance of an amazing director (Ron May).
This show, THIS, embodies all that Actors Theatre provides to the Phoenix community. As far as I am concerned, THIS is IT!