Having started out in a chicken coop, a fairground stage, and the stage in the old Condon School, the ShoeString Community Players performed its first musical, Brigadoon, in the newly built Olmscheid Auditorium during the summer of 1982. This was the first of many summer musicals, as well as mysteries, comedies and dramatic productions. We soon found our first home on S. 1st Street in the old Episcopal Church and called it the ShoeBox Theater, a name that has stuck. When we had to move from there, we performed in the Pythian Ballroom until the building sold. After that, there were many years of living out of three storage units and performing in numerous locations, but we never gave up offering live theater to our community.
It feels right to be back in downtown St. Helens in a somewhat bigger ShoeBox Theater, where we can offer a greater array of theatrical experiences for children and adults and offer classes and workshops than ever before. We got the keys in September and immediately built the stage and interior walls for storage and moved in by the end of the month. Even before the dust had settled, we were rehearsing for upcoming productions. In October, we were able to put on a children’s theater production, Scary Stories, the radio show War of The Worlds, and Haunted Tours. Before October had ended, we were in rehearsal for The Seussified Christmas Carol that concluded our 2018 year. Spring break was a week-long children’s theater camp with the performance of Twelve Angry Pigs. In early May Joyful Noise and I Am Phoenix hits the stage. Two books of poetry by Paul Fleischman come to life. We will soon be in rehearsal for another radio show, Our Miss Brooks, and two melodramas, Curse You Jack Dalton and He Done Her Wrong and more productions are in the works for the fall and next year.
ShoeString Community Players is pleased to announce our grand opening is May 18, 2019 at 4:00-7:00 pm at the ShoeBox Theater, 231 S. 1st Street in St. Helens. Come join us for refreshments, live entertainment, take a tour of our theater and hear about upcoming productions and our SSCP mission. Take a stroll down memory lane with past production pictures, posters and programs to see what we have been up to the last 36 years. Consider becoming a sponsor, a member or make a personal donation.
For more information on the ShoeString Community Players, follow them on Facebook or visit our website at www.sscptheater.org.