Portland Center Stage
Portland Center Stage, now celebrating its 25th Anniversary season, is a premier professional theater company and the state’s fourth largest arts organization. Embracing a mission to inspire our community by bringing stories to life in unexpected ways, Portland Center Stage produces an annual season of ten plays that range from enduring classics to world premieres by some of the most talented voices in American theater. The company’s award-winning youth education programs, which include Visions & Voices in-school playwriting residencies, Stage Door workshops, and youth matinees, serve more than 7,000 young people annually. Portland Center Stage works with over 100 artists, cultural organizations, community groups, and social service agencies each year to provide a variety of free public programs, including music concerts, visual arts displays, Ideas in Play panel discussions, film screenings, professional development labs, and more. Last year, the company served more than 180,000 people from its home in the renovated Gerding Theater at the Armory.
Shakespeare for a New Generation, Portland Center Stage presented student matinees and evening performances of A Midsummer Night's Dream directed by Penny Metropulos. In addition, the company provided workshops, post-performance discussions, study guides, and bus subsidies. A total of 20 performances and 30 educational activities benefitted more than 2,200 middle- and high-school students from 55 schools located in Oregon and Washington.
Comment from Education and Program Manager Sara Mitchell:
I had the pleasure of leading a delightfully animated discussion with students, including one of the deaf schools. The students were tickled that the Lion had improvised a few signs into his monologue towards the end of the play. Afterwards, a young man came up to the stage to ask me a few questions in sign language. He wanted to know more about the design process for the scenic elements of the show and literally could not get the words out fast enough because he was so excited.