A Theater for the People

The Square Foot Theatre puts the community in community theater.

Photo credit: Square Foot Theatre

When taking in a show at the Square Foot Theatre, you can bring your own food and drink. And if you're so inspired, you can bring your own talent to the next performance. The nearly ten-year-old company puts the community in community theater.

"Our name is the Square Foot Theatre because it's everyone's feet, all these square feet that make it all possible," said Executive Director Jared Brown.

Now in its ninth season, Square Foot Theatre is about to stage its 50th show. Its season has eight productions - seven musicals and one play.

The company offers a summer camp, a summer program for young people, and opportunities for college students. With support from Jamie A. Hulley Arts Foundation, it also brings programs into area schools, including the St. Martin De Porres Academy and Amity Middle School.

Prior to its current home, the company was living out of a suitcase and renting space, which limited it to one or two productions per year.

"It's a perfect atmosphere," Brown said of the company's permanent venue in Wallingford. "We seat 80 people so it's intimate. You feel like you're in the show."

Priding itself on staging professional-quality productions, the company was able to purchase its own lighting and sound system last year with help from a $2,500 grant from The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven together with more than $8,000 raised in The Great Give® 2016.

The company stages a variety of productions, from the family-friendly Suessical Jr. to shows more appropriate for adult audiences such as The Rocky Horror Picture Show and The Vagina Monologues.

"We're about giving all age ranges their moment to shine," Brown said.

For more information about The Square Foot Theatre Company, please visit its profile on giveGreater.org.

Did you know?

Low-income students who are highly engaged in the arts are more than twice as likely to graduate college as their peers with no arts education. Source: Americans for the Arts Facts and Figures.

This story is part of the Inspiration Monday story series produced by The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven.