Pasadena Little Theatre Begins 62nd Season

13 Jun

Pasadena Little Theatre has recently embarked on its 62nd season, making it the oldest community theatre in the Greater Houston area and placing it among the longest operating theaters in the state of Texas.

Established in 1955 and chartered by a group of proactive residents seeking to promote theater culture and arts to the city of Pasadena, the Pasadena Little Theatre has continued to grow and expand at a rapid pace, despite numerous setbacks throughout the early days of its development.

In the beginning, performances were held in the gymnasium and churches until 1961 when an old church was purchased on Tulip Street and transformed into a performance venue until a disastrous fire in 1983 destroyed the theatre.

Julie Owen
(President of the pasadena little theatre)

A site at 4318 Allen-Genoa Road was rented in 1983 and purchased as PLT’s permanent home in 1985.

Extra space has been added twice with the most recent in 2018.

This addition was built to enable more rehearsal space, children’s classes, parties, Black Box performances and the annual New Year’s Eve Casino Night Gala Fundraiser

Aimed to promote and cultivate the culture of the theatrical arts, the Pasadena Little Theatre has committed itself to delivering quality theater productions to patrons of the community and to exposing the youth of the community to the theatrical lifestyle.

“Our mission is to bring quality entertain­ment and theatre educa­tion to Pasadena and Lhc surrounding areas,” said Owen. “Through our Young Actors Workshops we arc introducing theatre to all ages.”

Facing a Number of Difficulties

As a community the­ater and a non-profit orga­nization, the Pasadena Lit­tle Theatre faces a number of difficulties not beset to larger, conventional the­aters, forcing it to oper­ate in a more resourceful manner.

Tn doing so, a strong sense of camaraderie is formed between the mem­bers of Lhe theater that has proven invaluable in Lhc growth and success of the organization.

“Being a community theater means that every­one involved from our board to our actors, stage crew, from office, con­cession stand and raffle basket sales all volunteer their time to make our the­ater your home town the­ater,” said Owen. “Being non-profit means we don’t run the theater to make a profit. All profit goes back into the theater and other productions.

Otherwise, the Alley, Theatre Under The Stars and others would volun­teer also. We have no one on the payroll. Budgets for our productions are determined solely by our success, we horrow no money for our produc­tions. Over the years, we have accumulated a lot as far as props and costumes go, but our volunteer ac­tors and production staff also furnish items from their homes or closets also.

Giving Back and Servicing the Community

We, involved with the Pasadena Little The­atre, are always looking for volunteers and new members who are a welcome addition to our theater.

The Pasadena Little Theatre focuses on serving the community not just by providing quality exposure to theatrical arts through high caliber theater productions, but also by placing an emphasis on giving back and servicing the community.

Our Primary Focus is providing first-class entertainment for our patrons, through our Young Actors Workshops and play reading we are also focused on theatre and arts education.

Julie owen

“For our 62nd season we are also asking patrons to participate in voluntary donations drives for other non-profits. The drive of our current show benefits The Center for Healing of Racism.

Despite their recent resounding success, the members of the Pasadena Little Theatre continually look for opportunities to grow and promote the thespian arts and culture to a larger audience.

“We have come a long way from performing in school gymnasiums and have a permanent home on Allen Genoa Road,” said Owen. “The Pasade­na Little Theatre belongs to the Pasadena Chamber of Commerce. we are a member of the Pasadena Strawberry Festival, American Association of Community Theatre, and Texas Nonprofit Theatres, Inc. Through our partici­pation in theseorganiza­tions we will continue to grow within the commu­nity.

New Black Box Performance Space

For the first time, our 62nd season includes three Black Box performances which increase our season to 10 shows.

We arc excited to be offering cutting edge theatre this season in our Black Box venue and we plan on also introducing Experimental theatre in the Black Box venue in the future years to attract more audiences, and actors.

We will continue to provide mainstream theatre on our Main Stage for our regular patrons.

For Owen, being a part of the Pasadena Little Theatre bestows a surreal and magical experience unlike any other in the world.

It gives me great satisfaction to be part of a production and watch it grow from beginning rehearsals to actual performances. To watch the faces of the audience, to hear their laughter and their applause.

And our volunteers in the lobby get the satisfaction of the same including the positive comments between acts and as people congratulate the actors after the show.

It is Very Fulfilling and Positive.

Julie Owen

Over 40 years experience as an actor, director, choreographer. Originally began with PLT in 1974 with Bennie Nipper during her summer youth workshops. Credits include Boston, New York, Houston, Pasadena and Deer Park. Joined the PLT board in 2012.