Mission -- Statement of Purpose:
Old Town Actors Studio is a center for theatre performance, production, education, training, and experimentation. By presenting both classical and new theatre work, OTAS showcases quality theatre arts that strengthen and challenge both the artist and the audience. Old Town Actors Studio's mission is to highlight theatre that challenges and unites varying idologies, diversities, and cultures to create an intimate experience between artists and southeastern Idaho audiences.
In August, 2008, five local theatre junkies--Skip Carter, Sherri Dienstfrey, Camile Carter, Angeline Underwood, and Jamie Romine--faced the choice of walking away from their addiction or choosing to wallow in the throes of late-stage thespian-ism. They formed the Old Town Actors Studio. Their assorted spouses and partners went along as co-dependents.
Pocatello already has an excellent dinner theatre with the West Side Players. Family-friendly theatre and musicals have a home at the The Palace. Theatre ISU is for current students. So the folks who created OTAS wanted to do pretty much whatever they wanted with people who shared their enthusiasm and drive. The first year tended toward the serious -- maybe even depressing. The mood has lightened since--okay, it's true that OTAS scheduled 'Night Mother on Mother's Day weekend and Richard III on Fathers' Day, 2010, but those were accidents. Also, irony is funny! ...right?
At ten years and counting, we're still doing shows that challenge us and our audiences. As a result, we stage a huge variety of productions, from children's theatre to Broadway musicals to tense dramas and everything in between. We've explored the nature of art (Bakersfield Mist), the trauma of bullying (The Hundred Dresses), the agony of a terrible job (Fully Committed), and the absurdity of life (Clean House)--and that's just in the last year. Burlesque, modern dance, and New York-style cabaret round out our theatrical offerings.
So far, then, so good. While OTAS has paid the rent, covered the royalties, and has extended its lease, it will be several more years before we will look to an indefinite future. But as long as the OTAS folks maintain our enthusiasm and audiences are large enough to pay expenses, OTAS will continue to provide a distinctive theatre experience for Pocatello. We thank our audiences for their support. And we will keep some of the theatre junkies off the streets.