June 9, 2021 – Theatre Tuscaloosa has been chosen to present its production of Love and Cheese Toast, by Cooper Shattuck, at Virtual AACTFest 2021, the National Community Theatre Festival, June 14-20, 2021.
Produced by the American Association of Community Theatre (AACT), Virtual AACTFest 2021 (www.aact.org/21) will feature 12 community theatre productions from across the United States and the U.S. Military Services, which will be streamed during the week of the festival. Love and Cheese Toast is scheduled for Wednesday, June 16, at 4:15 p.m., Central Time.
For the past year, community theatres around the country have had to make difficult decisions due to the pressures and restrictions imposed by the global pandemic, functioning in survival mode. But theatre is resilient, and companies around the country are adapting, redefining, and reimagining who they are and how they will continue to serve their communities now and into a post-pandemic future.
Virtual AACTFest 2021 will celebrate those stories of resiliency, representing the best of community theatre in America. In addition to the 12 productions, keynotes, workshops, educational programming, vendor exhibits, a design competition, and special events will focus on supporting theatres through this evolutionary journey.
A professional video production company, Colvin Theatrical, has recorded each show on four professional Blackmagic cinema cameras, with a mixture of close-ups, wide angles and moving shots. Using live-editing and broadcasting technology, each performance video emulates the theatrical experience each finalist would have at an in-person AACTFest, while maintaining professional, high-quality cinematic standards.
Love and Cheese Toast is set in 1950s Alabama across multiple decades. A white bride-to-be upsets the apple cart when she plans to invite her beloved black housekeeper to her wedding. Inspired by the playwright’s family history, this funny, poignant story explores the complex and often dysfunctional family dynamics created by the barriers of racism. The Theatre Tuscaloosa production includes Sarah Kathryn Bonds, Gary Wise, Layla Kahn-Hickman, NorQuina Rieves, Taril Slater, Kathy Wilson, Ernie Turley, and Lisa Waldrop Shattuck. The artistic production crew includes Executive Producer/Director Tina Turley, Scene Shop Foreman/Stage Manager Mitchell Morin, with lighting and scenic design by Technical Director Wheeler Kincaid, costume design by Costumer Jeanette Waterman, and hair and make-up by Ava Buchanan.
Turley said, “We are thrilled and honored to have our production selected for AACTFest! While our productions have been recognized for excellence at the state and regional level in the past, this is our first production to be featured at the national festival. We are especially excited to be sharing a brand-new script by a Tuscaloosa playwright alongside theatres from across the country.”
AACTFest is a celebration of theatre and a learning experience for those who take part. Each National Company production will receive an online adjudication from experienced and nationally known theatre professionals. Their comments on productions will be an educational opportunity for all participating company members and the audience.
Registration and performance tickets are available to all. The stream of Love and Cheese Toast can be viewed by either registering for the full virtual AACTFest at www.aact.org/21 or by purchasing individual performance streams at www.BroadwayOnDemand.com.
Alternatively, Theatre Tuscaloosa will be offering in-person performances of Love and Cheese Toast in the Bean-Brown Theatre on the Martin Campus of Shelton State Community College (9500 Old Greensboro Road) at 7:30 p.m. on July 9 and at 2:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. on July 10. Tickets for the in-person performances are available for purchase now at www.theatretusc.com or 205.391.2277, and prices are $19 for adults, $17 for seniors, members of the military, and Shelton State employees, $14 for students and children, and $7 for Shelton State students. Seating at the evening performances will be at full-capacity, and seating at the matinee will be distanced (every-other row and two seats between parties), requiring the matinee performance’s tickets to be purchased by phone only. More information about health and safety precautions for in-person performances is available at www.theatretusc.com.
National Companies and their productions being presented at Virtual AACTFest 2021 include:
AACT provides networking, resources, and support for America’s theatres. AACT represents the interests of more than 7,000 theatres across the United States and its territories, as well as theatre companies with the U.S. Military Services overseas.
Theatre Tuscaloosa is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit community theatre located on the Martin Campus of Shelton State Community College. Theatre Tuscaloosa has been enriching the greater Tuscaloosa community since 1971 through quality theatrical productions and educational outreach.
A vital member of the Alabama Community College System, Shelton State Community College is committed to creating new opportunities for West Alabama. “With a renewed focus on meeting the needs of its customers, the College offers innovative solutions and an enhanced approach to customized education, training, and community impact,” states President Brad Newman. “Collectively, we will be excellent in each!”
Be part of the new vision for our shared community. Visit sheltonstate.edu to learn more or apply.