Final bow for Tapestry Theater

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Final bow for Tapestry Theater
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After twelve years of bringing award-winning theater to Alexandria, the Tapestry Theatre Company will be closing its doors after its final production, the Shakespeare classic Richard III, closes at the end of May.

Citing an increasing difficulty in recruiting technical help, the theaters board of directors has decided to cease operations after its final 2008 season ends on May 24.

Its sad for everyone since weve been doing this for 12 years, said Executive Director Peggy Jones, one of the theaters founding members. Our biggest problem has been getting volunteers.

Jones, along with Rusty Clauss and Robert Sicatelli, founded Tapestry Theatre Company in 1995 as a way to bring classical theater to Alexandria at a time when arts education funds were being cut drastically from the local school systems.

Tapestry Theatre Company has always been a place for people of all ages to learn about the theater, said Jones, whose own daughters interest in theater helped launch the company. We were excited to help teach people about the theater and we have always been open to anyone who wanted to learn.

TTC performances were originally held at Grace Episcopal Church but moved to the Nannie J. Lee Center seven years ago.

Running a theater is still a business, sighed Jones as she prepares for the final production. Its difficult finding people to help out with things like filing grant paperwork or scheduling. We havent had enough volunteers to take over jobs as others have moved on.

Tapestrys inaugural production was of Shakespeares Taming of the Shrew. Since then, TTC has produced classical and contemporary works, performed in numerous festivals and showcased award-winning original plays.

Im proud TTC has been able to provide quality family entertainment to the community, Jones said. We improved immensely over the years but when it came to finding someone to continue running things, it just wasnt happening.

As a tribute to its original mission, Tapestrys final production will be another Shakespeare masterpiece, Richard III, the story of the villainous deeds of a murderously scheming king.
Richard III will be a reunion of sorts, Jones said. Many board members and supporters will be performing or helping with this final production.

TTCs farewell staging runs from May 9 – 24 at the Nannie J. Lee Center in Old Town. Performances are Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 pm and Sundays at 2 pm. Tickets can be purchased at the door on the day of the show and reservations are not necessary.

Once it closes its doors for productions, Tapestry Theater is planning to hold a garage sale in July to liquidate various props, costumes and stage boxes, with proceeds going to the Northern Virginia Theater Alliance Scholarship Fund.

While its sad to be closing TTC, we wanted to finish what we said we would do when we first began, Jones said. We wanted to finish with a bang and go out on top.

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