HMTC this week: friends, family and theatrical creation | entertainment
There was a group of students graduating from college with a degree in theater. They were passionate about live theater. Rather than auditioning for roles and waiting for work, they decided to start their own theater company. They found a church basement to produce plays. They eventually added six more members and the nine soon performed seasons of plays. Half of the original founding members have turned to major film and television works. You may have heard of the famous Chicago theater company Steppenwolf. The original members who have gone to film and television are Gary Sinise, John Malkovich, Laurie Metcalf, Alan Wilder, Terry Kinney, Alan Wilder. The first additions were Gary Cole (Midnight Caller) and John Mahoney (Seinfeld).
What is impressive is the passion of these actors and the way they found their own home to work on their passion. The number of theater companies that start in or around churches is also impressive.
The theater has been around for a very long time. According to www.pbs.org, “The first pieces were performed with a single actor (called a protagonist) and a chorus of people who helped him tell the story.” Then the Greek playwright Aeschylus added a second speaking role, called the antagonist. His pupil Sophocles added a third actor. Euripides added both a prologue, introducing the subject of the play, and a divine figure who concluded the details at the end of the play.
The first plays were held at the Theater of Dionysus in Athens. It was at the beginning of the 5th century. The theater became so popular that it spread throughout Greece. Later around the world.
Today theater companies can be started by friends. Or, in the case of HMTC, by a mother and daughter with contributions from kind-hearted community members.
Silvia Gonzalez Scherer Executive Artistic Director of the Hanford Multicultural Theater Company.