By Tiago Zielske
The Williamston Post
The Williamston Theatre has won the National Theatre Company Grant honor from the American Theatre Wing.
Best known for being the creator of The Antoinette Perry “Tony” Awards, the American Theatre Wing awarded 12 theaters this year with its National Theatre Company Grant.
Williamston Theatre has been awarded $12,000 to help with general operations.
According to the American Theatre Wing website, companies chosen to receive the grants have “articulated a distinctive mission, cultivated an audience and nurtured a community of artists in ways that strengthen the quality, diversity, and dynamism of American Theatre.”
“It’s great to get this validation of our work. We’re in terrific company, as the other theaters recognized are doing some really groundbreaking work and having a great impact on their respective communities,” said Development Director Emily Sutton-Smith.
The Williamston Theatre opened as an Equity theatre in June 2006 and has hosted 48 professional productions.
Around 50 percent of overall expenses must be raised every year, so the $12,000 has been incredibly helpful for Sutton-Smith.
“This award allows us to begin a new chapter of our existence. We have established ourselves strongly in Williamston, and in the larger Michigan theatrical community. Now we get to enter the national arena and participate in the conversation about the future of our art form. This will open doors for us as we continue to build relationships with our colleagues around the country to promote Michigan plays and artists, and to bring new works to our stage,” Sutton-Smith said in the Williamston Theatre press release.
The first production of its 2014-2015 season is the World Premiere of Joseph Zettelmaier’s The Gravedigger, A Frankenstein Story. Performances run from Sept. 25 to Nov. 2.