Wednesday, December 9, 2009

More Stories of Engagement

Mary Elizabeth Scallen (on Claire Inie-Richards)
Artistic Associate
Claire connected with People's Light by attending Youth Summerstage in 2004. She took classes at the theatre the following fall, winter, and spring, participating in Resident Director Shannon O'Donnell's Young Women's Ensemble to explore the story of "the changeling child." She attended Youth Summerstage again in 2005 and soon after was asked to audition for an upcoming Main Stage production of The Crucible. Claire continued to attend fall and winter Theatre School classes, working with Teaching Artist Gillian McNally to explore the lives of historical American women. Then she appeared on the Main Stage for the first time in spring 2006 as Mary in The Crucible, playing alongside senior company members to adult and high school audiences. In the summer of 2006, Claire attended Teen Summerstage, led by company members Kathryn Petersen and Michael Cruz, exploring the complicated relationships among characters from Greek myths. That fall, she began a part-time internship at People's Light, assisting Resident Dramaturg Elizabeth Pool with production research. She appeared on the Main Stage for a second time in the spring of 2007 as Curio in Twelfth Night, again playing to both adult and high school audiences. Her dramaturgy internship continued unabated as she earned a lead role in Getting Near to Baby, a production for the Theatre's Family Discovery Series in the spring of 2008. That summer, Claire became a Teen Leader for the Youth Summerstage program. In the fall of 2008, she appeared as The Attendant in a Main Stage and PD High School production of The Persians.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

We had a blast at Malvern Victorian Christmas '09!

This past Saturday, People's Light Resident Teaching Artist Jess Conda taught an acting workshop as part of Malvern Victorian Christmas (for more information, click here). We had a great group of kids, several enthusiastic parents, and a good time was had by all. Check out their website, and please join us next year!

Monday, December 7, 2009

PLTC's Adult Ensemble present: THE TEMPEST

By William Shakespeare
Directed by Ceal Phelan
Steinbright Stage

Saturday, December 12th at 8pm
Sunday, December 13th at 2pm

Friday, December 18th at 8pm
Saturday, December 19th at 8pm
Sunday, December 20th at 2pm

This production is free. Donations are accepted and appreciated at the door.

Seating is on a first come, first served basis and we strongly recommend arriving at the theatre at least a half hour before show time.

Please call Sara Waxman at 610.647.1900 ext. 116 for more information, or if someone in your party requires special seating.

For more information, see the flyer here.


The Adult Ensemble is a group of adult theatre school students who have worked together for five years. Their previous productions have included The Dining Room, The Laramie Project, Our Country’s Good, An Invitation to Visit Harrison Texas, and Light up the Sky.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Hatta Whopper visits NBC's 10! Show!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

A Day in the Life - Jeff Coon

Another exciting "A Day in the Life," this time with actor Jeff Coon. Jeff plays the genius director from Russia, Vladimir Von Upchuck in Snow White, and appeared as Prince Aiden of Sargasso in last year's Cinderella. Here are his photos:

Jeff (center) as Vladimir.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Snow White Word Search

A Snow White Word Search
Instructions: Search for words from the play hidden horizontally, vertically, diagonally, and backwards.

Word List:
Snow White

Friday, November 13, 2009

Make Your Own Clapperboard!

Make Your Own Clapperboard!
By: Sara Waxman

You Will Need:

A Cereal Box
One Hole Punch
Brass Paper Fastener (2)
Black and White Poster Paint (or if you are feeling adventurous, any two colors will work)
A paint brush
A ruler

Remove cereal from box (liner paper and all) and set aside.

STEP TWOPaint cereal box black (or the darker of the two colors you have chosen instead).

Let the paint dry in a well ventilated area.

Pour a bowl of cereal. Eat it.

Once the box is dry, open the box and lay flat and horizontally on the table in front of you.

One each side, use a ruler to draw a horizontal line from one end of the box to the other (a good width to go by is the width of the ruler).

Cut along the line on each side. You will end up with a large piece of the box and a small piece. These are your clapboard and clapper.

Glue or tape your cereal box back together using the original folds of the packaging as a guide.

Use the one hole punch to punch a hole in the clapboard on either side.

Fit the clapper into the open end of the clapboard and mark with a pencil where the holes line up.

Punch the clapper with the one hole punch where you marked it.

Fasten together the clapboard and the clapper with the brass paper fastener.

In pencil, stencil on the details of your Clapperboard and paint.

Let the paint dry in a well ventilated area.

While waiting, pour another bowl of cereal and eat it.

Fill your Clapperboard with scenes and charades and play!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Updated Stories of Engagement

Recently, People's Light came up with what we call a "Long Range Plan." This process made us think about who we are, what we do, and what we want to accomplish in the future. Part of the process included collecting stories from staff, patrons, and friends of the Theatre. These are our Stories of Engagement, and each one is unique; each person who wrote a story talked about how they came to be part of the PLTC, or how the community around them is affected by the Theatre. They are interesting reads, and we post them on our website for all to read. We change them out every so often (there are lots of them to get through!) and will put the new ones here for you to read, but if you want to see them on the website you can click here.

Peter DeLaurier (Artistic Associate) and Ceal Phelan
Company Members
We started out as People’s Light's competitors. We co-founded the Delaware Theatre Company in Wilmington. In our early years there, we met PLTC co-founder Danny Fruchter and others at PLTC and helped connect the theatre with Actors' Equity Association to establish its first union contract. We then worked at PLT under that contract during the summers when we laid ourselves off at DTC. Ceal taught teens in PLTC's summer program. Peter directed in the Festival of New Plays. We made many friends in the company. When we returned to the area after our time running a theatre in Mississippi, we were welcomed back into the ranks at PLTC. Our production of Zig Zag Zelda (at First Stage—a second theatre we founded in Delaware) was performed at PLTC and considered one of the theatre's first "Phased Development" projects. When the resident acting company was reformed under the NEA grant in 1989 we were asked to be members. We've been here ever since.

Both of our kids have worked at PLTC. Jake started in Summerstage and classes and ended up in New Voices Ensemble and in Family Series productions of Breaking Spells and Holes. He's worked backstage and ran follow-spot for a number of productions. Nok was part of the teen crew hired to usher for Free Fest.

We're involved in our community. We can't go to our Friends Meeting without discussing at length the recent production with other Friends who've attended or are about to. Ceal has worked with the Volunteer English Program and with the Exchange Club (mentoring a young single mother). The young women she worked with brought their families to productions. Many families of Jake's soccer teams at Greater Chester Valley Soccer Association (the last of which Peter started and coached for many years) became regular theatre goers. Jake's alma mater, Upattinas, comes frequently to our Project Discovery productions. We're involved in Chester County Democratic politics. Peter is a County Committeeperson for Malvern Borough. The local democrats (and not just a few friendly republicans we've met on the campaign trail) come to shows through our connection. In this vicinity—in grocery stores, pharmacies, Post Office, at the polls, riding bikes on the street, taking a walk through the woods—we run into people (often whom we don't recognize) who KNOW us and want to talk about People’s Light.

At the theatre, we act and teach. We occasionally direct and write. (Peter's Anne of Green Gables was produced in the Family Series.) We work part-time on staff at the theatre. Ceal sometimes assists Melanye Finister in the Audience Development Department and Peter is one of three Artistic Associates. Peter is currently the company/staff representative on the Board of Trustees and has helped with the Strategic Planning committee. He is on the Facilities Committee and the staff Safety Committee. Ceal developed the Adult Ensemble for the Theatre School with Nancy Shaw and prepares a weekly vegetarian lunch for interested company and staff members.

Anne Congdon
Board Member
One of my very first dates with George Congdon, (in 1979) was to this professional theatre with a strange name that had just moved to Malvern. Although I had never heard of People’s Light and Theatre Company, George assured me that he had seen them perform at Strode’s Mill and thought they were very good. I don’t remember what that first play I saw was, I just know I was very impressed and I think we became subscribers almost immediately, bringing friends and family whenever possible.

It wasn’t long before People’s Light co-founder Danny Fruchter learned that George was a developer—and Danny had several building projects in mind. The farmhouse, which housed the administrative offices needed renovation to include actor housing as part of the project; a brand new administration building needed to be built; and eventually a banquet facility was constructed. George met the challenge and managed to call in a lot of favors from building suppliers, contractors and landscapers to get the jobs done at minimal cost.

Soon George joined the Board of Directors and served until his death in 1998. While on the Board, he was one of the main forces behind the launch of Project Discovery which would bring to the theatre all Chester County junior and senior high school students twice a year. This project started in 1988 and continues today.

While George was busy improving the physical facilities, I served on gala committees, (co-chairing one with former board member Margarett McKeel), auction, and other committees. Our youngest son, Greg, while taking a semester off from college, even got into the act. He was offered a job operating a moving spotlight for The Lady Sings the Blues. We had to apologize to the stage manager because occasionally Greg forgot to follow the actor with the spotlight. Luckily, he decided to pursue a different profession.

As a longtime subscriber and donor I have always been very involved and enthusiastic about the mission of the theatre and the quality of the actors, productions, and its leadership. Now, as a Board member myself, I have had the opportunity to get to know the theatre on an even more personal basis. I have had the opportunity to share my home for Spotlight Society gatherings and for Auction donation social functions. Also, it has been a privilege to supply housing for several visiting actors and directors.

If I sound like a proud parent, that’s how I feel. I have watched People’s Light for almost 30 years as it has grown from its infancy to adulthood, overcoming many inconceivable obstacles to continue on its path of innovation and creativity and artistic excellence, enhancing my life, and I believe, many others.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

A Day in the Life - Andrew Kane

This time for "A Day in the Life," we asked Andrew Kane to share his view of daily life with us--from behind a camera. Andrew is playing Bubba the Bodyguard in this season's Panto, Snow White, and appeared as Tom Cat in last year's Cinderella. Here are his photos (captions are by Andrew himself)!




(Cast member Chris Faith, who is playing Miles, the Butler in Snow White)


(From left to right--Snow White cast members Luigi Sottile, Christopher Patrick Mullen, Chris Faith, Mark Lazar, Lois Sach Binder and Rachel Brennan.)


"Fallout 3"

From last season's Cinderella.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Interview with the cast members of ABSENCE

We asked Greg Wood and Judith Lightfoot Clarke, Peter and Mary from Absence, to tell us about their characters and describe some of the elements of the play. It was a fun interview to do!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

The Scoop!

Peter DeLaurier (who played the The Patriarch in Nathan the Wise) just sent us this photo from The Scoop, our pre-show discussion which he led before each performance of Nathan. We had to share!

The Scoop has been very interesting so far, so the next time you come to a show, arrive an hour before performance time and get some insight into the show!

In & Out: Production Photos!

Recently, one of our production team members (the very talented Michael Hahn, Sound Operator) handed us a disc full of photos he had taken of various sets being made. These photos go back to when he started at People's Light, and include shows like Cinderella, End Days, A Tale of Two Cities and The Persians. You can see the works-in-progress and get a feel for how much work is involved!

And if you're curious about the members our shop team, see below!

Will Scribner, Scenic Painter

Bridget Brennan, Wardrobe Supervisor

Jefferson Haynes, Scenic Carpenter
(You may remember him as Hackin' Devil Dan from
Treasure Island!)

Greg Miller, Master Electrician

Dylan Jamison, Scene Shop Foreman

Kate Nelson, Stage Management Associate, and Michael Hahn, Sound Operator (and provider of all these wonderful photos!)

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

College Night 2009

We invited college students and their professors to the October 1st performance of Nathan the Wise, just like we did for The Persians last season. Included was a pre-show discussion led by Nathan actor and Resident Company member Peter DeLaurier, and a talk-back with the actors after the show. Prior to the show we invited everyone to hang out in the upper lobby, enjoy refreshments and check out the lobby display. Here are a couple photos!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Faith & Frienship: A Conversation with Scholars on NATHAN THE WISE

We held a free discussion on Nathan the Wise this past Sunday. Dramaturg Graham Graves moderated the panel, joined by three scholars, Elliot Ratzman, Visiting Professor of Jewish Studies and Religion, Temple University; Simon Richter, Professor of Germanic Studies, University of Pennsylvania; and Andrea Schatz, Fellow at the Center for Advanced Judaic Studies, University of Pennsylvania and Lecturer in the Department of Theology and Religious Studies, King’s College, London.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Media Goodness!

We've got a couple of really interesting Nathan the Wise-related videos for you: an interview with the director Abbey Adams, done by, and part 1 of our interview of dramaturg Graham Graves. Enjoy!

Abbey Adams Interview,

Graham Graves Interview, Part 1

Thursday, September 17, 2009

A Day in the Life Photoblog - Brian Anthony Wilson

We asked actor Brian Anthony Wilson, who plays Al-Hafi in Nathan the Wise, to document a normal day in his life--with pictures! And here they are, complete with captions from Brian:

"Parker & me brushing our teeth."

“Parker & Dad having breakfast.”

“Recycling—yay planet Earth!”

“Mowing the lawn.”

“Checking my e-mail.”

“Driving to work.”

“Learning my lines.”

Brian on Stage.