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Local News

July 11, 2014

Community theater festival opens in Duncan

DUNCAN — Seven community theaters from around Oklahoma joined Thursday to open the Oklahoma Community Theatre Association Festival  at the Simmons Center in Duncan.

The state competition will continue through Sunday.

“It’s very exciting to have OCTA back,” Sharon Burum, Duncan Little Theatre Board vice president and OCTA committee chairwoman,  said. “They were last here in 2001.”

The festival will feature seven performances and four workshops. Of those performances, the judges will select which two shows will be promoted to the regional competition. The adjudicators include Morrie Enders of Nebraska, Tim Jebsen of Texas and Kathy Pingel of Iowa.

Last year, Duncan Little Theatre’s competition piece “Dixie Swim Club” made it to the regional competition after finding success at the state contest in Ponca City. Burum directed the show.

This year, DLT is hosting OCTA Fest and will have another competition piece. Carole Ries, a representative from the AACT, which is the national community theater association,  will be present during the OCTA Fest. Someone from AACT has to be present for all state and regional competitions, Burum said.

The performances set for the festival include:

 Red Carpet Community Theatre performing “The Art of Remembering.” This was the first performance this year and was the only performance Thursday.

 “Love Letters” is the show to be performed by The Broken Arrow Community Playhouse. This play will be performed at 1 p.m. today.

 The Town and Gown Theatre in Stillwater will open the third block of performances with “Radio Gals.” This performance is set for 7 p.m. today.

 Shawnee Little Theatre is also set for the third block, which is at 7 p.m. today. That theater will perform “Gidion’s Knot.”

 Opening the fourth block will be Blue Moon Productions of Lawton. The group will perform “Lone Star” at 1 p.m. Saturday.

 Duncan Little Theatre wraps the fourth block by performing “Lemonade.” The show is also set for 1 p.m. Saturday.

 The final performance will be OnStage Woodward at 7 p.m. Saturday. The Woodward group will perform “Graceland and Asleep on the Wind.”

Burum said, having the OCTA Fest in Southwest Oklahoma isn’t a problem for many of the theater groups because of Duncan’s hospitality. For instance, each night the group is hosting After Glows to show off portions of the community.

The first After Glow took place at Wall Street Pup. Tonight’s After Glow will be at the Chisholm Trail Heritage Center. Saturday’s will be a birthday celebration for OCTA, which turns 45 this year. Like the individual performance blocks, the After Glows do have a cost to attend.

“It’s educational as well,” Burum said about the festival. “The audience gets to see set up and performances. The adjudicators come out and critique the performances. It helps you become a better actor and director.”

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