Ancram Opera House Announces Free, All-Virtual 5th Anniversary Season

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Ancram Opera House Announces Free, All-Virtual 5th Anniversary Season

To commemorate its Fifth Anniversary Season, Ancram Opera House will present, free of charge, new five productions designed for remote audience viewing and listening.

Beginning in May and running through August, the performances will range from original commissioned plays to the storytelling series REAL PEOPLE REAL STORIES to a brand-new project called LOCAL CHARACTERS featuring unscripted interviews with community residents.

"So much of what we do is intended to foster connection in this community that we love, and we are grateful that many of our offerings can be adapted to a virtual format," said AOH co-director Paul Ricciardi. "The act of storytelling is at the center of what we do and in times like these, telling and listening to stories is one way for us to process this experience and heal."

Kicking off the season in time for Mother's Day will be "LOCAL CHARACTERS: MOTHERS," a quartet of video interviews with Roe Jan residents on the topic of motherhood. A new interview will be posted on ancramoperahouse.org every Friday starting May 8th and may be watched anytime.

On June 27th REAL PEOPLE REAL STORIES: REDUX, a special fifth anniversary edition of the perennial audience favorite, will bring back some of the most memorable narratives told by local residents since the series debuted in 2015. RPRS can be watched live online, or on demand on the AOH website.

After last season's sold-out debut, CRYSTAL RADIO SESSIONS UPSTATE will return on July 11. Similar to the NPR radio program Selected Shorts, CRYSTAL RADIO SESSIONS UPSTATE showcases the work of established and emerging regional authors as read by some of the AOH audience's favorite actors. This live event can be viewed online or on demand.

On July 25, AOH will premiere LOCAL CHARACTERS, a new community series featuring lively, free-wheeling, unscripted conversations with surprise guests from the area conducted by AOH director Paul Ricciardi. LOCAL CHARACTERS can be viewed live online, or on demand on the AOH website.

From August 7-16, AOH will premiere SUMMER PLAY LAB, six performances of commissioned solo and small cast plays by noted area playwrights, performed by professional actors. This one-time event can be viewed live online, but will not be recorded.

"Our goal is to keep our community connected and actively engaged this summer, while we are still social distancing," said Jeffrey Mousseau, AOH co-director. "We're making the online shows free so there's no barrier to participation. We may be using technology to communicate with audiences this season, but we will still be focused on building that direct relationship between the performer and the audience. Audiences may be looking at a screen, but they'll feel like the performers are talking directly to them."

Ancram Opera House in southern Columbia County is an intimate showcase for fresh, contemporary work by visionary theater and musical artists where audiences can connect with performers in immersive, immediate ways. For more information visit www.ancramoperahouse.org.


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