Working Title Playwrights has benefited from the generosity of Academy Theatre, Lorene Fey and, especially, Robert Drake since 2006 by partnering with us to offer a variety of new play development workshops throughout each year. It is safe to say they are the most giving production team WTP has worked with in terms of providing space, lighting, sound, box office and concessions help. Simply put, they bend over backwards to make your experience there the best possible. I hope more people - both inside the business and the community at large - will take the time to see a show or volunteer at Academy. You won't be sorry for it.
I've usually been very entertained by Academy's productions and projects. Most theatres this size don't have internship programs, but this makes a real difference in exposing young people to the hands-on practicality of running a theatre - from every angle. Academy could do so much more if there were consistent support from the Avondale community, the Decatur community and a good deal more recognition in general. This theatre has SO much potential!
A friend invited me to a play reading here. What struck me was the friendly atmosphere and genuine engagement of people who wanted to offer constructive advice about improving the play. I also went to a performance here and it was easily as good as the professional shows I've seen in New York and elsewhere in Atlanta. I felt bad later because I hadn't given this group a chance until then. Academy has a lot of potential - sort of a sleeping giant.
The Academy Theatre does more than almost any other group I know of in Metro Atlanta to truly foster the widest variety of new and emerging artists, performers and artists. It's passionate, supportive company members will do everything they can to see a project from inception to completion.
This theatre doesn't LOOK like a theatre. Nobody would know it was even there because it's off the main road and hidden in kind of a bad area of town. I have seen plays at other theaters that were good but this one was surprising because I didn't expect much from a place like that. But the play was good and the actor was good and I forgot I was in a building like that. Also I thought it was at a school because it was called "Academy". You should probably get a better building, because you do good work and more people might come if they knew you were there.
I enjoy theatre - one might even say I'm a die-hard fan of live performances. I don't even mind going to the theatre alone. It's not just a social gathering for me. Some people like to go just to be seen - and there are a few theatres in town where I'm SURE people pay top dollar for tickets and can't tell you a thing about the show afterwards. I have seen several performances at Academy Theatre - and usually I've been intrigued by the choice of play and the performances. Occasionally there's a lame actor or a so-so play... but for the most part, I like their work tremendously. What's depressing is seeing so few people in the audience. Come on, people - Academy does excellent work! A little support would go a long way! Two thumbs up!
Academy theater is a really neat place. They are HUGE supporters of local playwrites, artists, dancers -- you name it. The lobby has works for sale from a really talented local artist and I have seen two shows there that were written by local playwrites. I also saw a puppet show with my son, a belly dancing act, and a Steampunk festival. They rent the theater for benefits and events, and do a lot for local charities. The variety of programing they offer is really good - from serious drama to comedy to musicals to crazy mixed up versions of all three. And tickets are actually AFFORDABLE!
I love going to this theatre because it always surprises me. A friend of mine was an intern there and she always talks about how much she learned. I really like the late night improv, and seeing the talented music acts like Matthew Troutwein's groups. I have seen about 6 shows there in the last few years. I wish they would perform more full length plays!
Academy Theatre bends over backwards to offer something for everyone. Granted, sometimes the production values are wobbly - but funding is often the culprit. I can't think of another theatre that comes close to their level of diversity. I wasn't a big fan of wrestling - but it's impressive that Academy managed to squeeze this in last season, alongside a burlesque dance troupe, Battle Acts and Michael Frayn's "Copenhagen" - not to mention the youth theatre, intern program, senior ensemble and a longstanding alliance with Working Title Playwrights. Some might say Academy tries too hard to please everyone -- jack of all trades and master of none. I'm willing to concede that, were they to narrow the focus a bit, the company might be taken more seriously. But for a small theatre company with no union contracts, this is a group well worth watching. Far exceeds expectations for a theatre of this size & scope, frankly I'm amazed.
Academy Theatre is the oldest theatre company in Atlanta. In its many incarnations, this group has made valiant efforts to serve as many interest groups as possible - currently running a youth outreach, senior outreach, housing a dance troupe and a notable regional playwright development collective. Academny recently hosted a benefit Haunted House, donating proceeds to a senior center and a local Animal Shelter. Under the direction of Robert Drake and Lorene Fey, Academy has continued to uphold the ideals set in motion by founder Frank Wittow - and deserves far better support from the Avondale Estates community and the Decatur community. Academy Theatre (and its management team) give back more than the majority of this community will ever know.