(Pittsfield, MA) Barrington Stage Company (BSC), under the leadership of Julianne Boyd, Artistic Director, celebrates the 10th Anniversary and Re-Opening of the Sydelle and Lee Blatt Performing Arts Center with Broadway’s Joshua Henry (The Scottsboro Boys, Hamilton, Carousel) in an Encore Concert, Joshua Henry Up Close, on Sunday, May 29 at 8:00 p.m. Tickets are $60, by calling 413-236-8888 or online at barringtonstageco.org.
The concert will honor long-time supporters of Barrington Stage since its early years, Sydelle and Lee Blatt, who were instrumental in BSC’s move from Sheffield to Pittsfield in 2005. The Blatts were honored in 2011’s annual Gala for their outstanding support. Sydelle has been a member of the BSC Board of Trustees since 2003.
Sydelle and Lee’s support of Barrington Stage through the years has been a tremendous example of personal giving. In 2012, The Blatts gifted the VFW building in Pittsfield to Barrington Stage, now the Sydelle and Lee Blatt Performing Arts Center, which houses a newly renovated 136-seat St. Germain Stage and Mr. Finn’s Cabaret, a 99-seat cabaret. This gift enabled Barrington Stage to have a permanent home for new works, which is what the Blatts are passionate about.
In 2020, the Blatts inaugurated the Sydelle Blatt New Works Commissioning Program with a transformational $1 million dollar gift, which will commission new work as well as support the development and production of new work.
When asked what the Blatts favorite shows they’ve seen at their Performing Arts Center, Sydelle and Lee replied, “Anything written by Mark St.Germain (Freud’s Last Session; Dr. Ruth, All the Way), directed by Julianne Boyd (Dr. Ruth, All the Way; Broadway Bounty Hunter), and plays that feature Associate Artist Mark H. Dold (Freud’s Last Session).”
Built in 1972 as Lt. John L Truden Local V.F.W. Post 448, the 50-year-old building, which BSC leased as Stage 2 from 2008-2011, was renamed the Sydelle and Lee Blatt Performing Arts Center and dedicated in a ribbon-cutting ceremony on May 26, 2012.
The 12,602 square-foot air-conditioned building has two levels. The upper level houses a café and the 136-seat St. Germain Stage named after BSC Associate Artist and Berkshires playwright Mark St. Germain, acclaimed author of Freud’s Last Session and The Best of Enemies. The lower level houses rehearsal space, offices and a 99-seat cabaret space named Mr. Finn’s Cabaret after Tony Winner William Finn, Artistic Producer of BSC’s Musical Theatre Lab. In 2014, a major renovation took place with the addition of an enlarged backstage space with dressing rooms and a green room for the acting company.
This season, programming at the St. Germain Stage at the Sydelle and Lee Blatt Performing Arts Center will include three world premieres: Andy Warhol in Iran by Brent Askari; ABCD by May Treuhaft-Ali; The Supadupa Kid by Sukari Jones and Joel Waggoner, based on Ty Allan Jackson’s book; and Waiting for Godot by Samuel Beckett.
For more information on programming at the Sydelle and Lee Blatt Performing Arts Center, visit barringtonstageco.org.
ABOUT BARRINGTON STAGE COMPANY
Barrington Stage Company (BSC) is an award-winning theatre located in Pittsfield, MA, in the heart of the Berkshires. Co-founded in 1995 by Artistic Director Julianne Boyd, BSC’s mission is to produce top-notch, compelling work; to develop new plays and musicals; and to engage our community with vibrant, inclusive educational outreach programs. BSC attracts over 60,000 patrons annually and has gained national recognition for its superior-quality productions and comprehensive educational programming, including the award-winning Playwright Mentoring Project, the Musical Theatre Conservatory, Youth Theatre, KidsAct! and other initiatives. The company has become integral to the economic revitalization of downtown Pittsfield. BSC’s reputation for excellence began with a smash revival of Cabaret that moved to Boston in 1997 for an extended run. The theatre’s prominence grew with the world premiere of The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee by William Finn and Rachel Sheinkin (BSC 2004; Broadway 2005-2008, winner of two Tony Awards). Other notable productions include the world premiere of Christopher Demos-Brown’s American Son (BSC 2016; Broadway 2018); Mark St. Germain’s Freud’s Last Session (BSC 2009; Off-Broadway 2010-2012); Leonard Bernstein, Comden & Green’s On the Town (BSC 2013; Broadway 2014, four Tony Award nominations); Stephen Sondheim and George Furth’s Company, starring Aaron Tveit (BSC 2017); and West Side Story in honor of Leonard Bernstein and Jerome Robbins’ centenaries (BSC 2018). BSC develops and commissions new work with two programs: PlayWorks, which supports the creation of new plays, and the Musical Theatre Lab, which develops new musicals. Since 1995, BSC has produced 38 new works, 19 of which have moved to New York and major US regional theatres. Following the industry-wide shutdown due to the coronavirus pandemic, BSC was the first Equity theatre in the US to return to live performance with its critically acclaimed production of Harry Clarke, starring BSC Associate Artist Mark H. Dold and directed by Ms. Boyd.
The 2021 season, featuring a series of critically acclaimed indoor and outdoor productions, included Chester Bailey by Joseph Dougherty starring father and son Reed and Ephraim Birney, which won four Berkshire Theatre Awards, including Outstanding Play; Eleanor by Mark St. Germain and starring Tony Award winner Harriet Harris, who received a Berkshire Theatre Award for Outstanding Solo Performance; and the world premiere of A Crossing: A New Musical, created in association with Calpulli Mexican Dance Company, choreographed by Joshua Bergasse and Alberto Lopez and directed by Bergasse, which won eight Berkshire Theatre Awards including Outstanding Production of a Musical. The 2022 season includes revivals of Ain’t Misbehavin’, A Little Night Music and Waiting for Godot; the Pulitzer Prize-winning Anna in the Tropics; and four world premieres: Andy Warhol in Iran, ABCD, All of Me and the musical The Supadupa Kid, based on the novel by Ty Allan Jackson.