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Grinnell Community Theatre (GCT) produces live theatrical plays and musicals which draw actors, directors, crew and even the occasional playwright from the broad pool of local artistic talent. GCT presents approximately four shows each year at a variety of Grinnell venues. Shows often include a spring dessert theatre, summer musical, fall one-act on the pageant wagon, and winter live radio show.
History of Grinnell Community Theatre
Grinnell Community Theatre originated in 1972 under the Grinnell Parks and Recreation Department and the Community Art Association (which pre-dated the current Grinnell Area Arts Council). Originators included Jeanne Burkle,Ned Donahoe, Marion Jones, Esther Bethel, Betty Moffett, Dick Cervene, Mary Baumgartner, Tom Latimer, Dorothy Pinder, John Kintzinger, Bob Sheeder, Bill Vanderpool, and others.
GCT's first production was Kings, Queens and Pawns, directed by Ned Donahoe, former member of the Grinnell College Theatre Department. Tom Latimer, then director of the Grinnell Parks and Recreation Department, wrote a successful $2,000 grant application to the Iowa Arts Council to underwrite costs of the production. It was presented November 16 and 17, 1972 in the basement of the Veterans Memorial Building, then the facilities of the Grinnell Parks and Recreation Department.
Performances have since ventured to Friendship Hall of the United Church of Christ, B.G. Voertman Theatre, Grinnell College Arena Theatre, Grinnell Country Club, Grinnell Elks Club, Grinnell Steakhouse, Grinnell Arts Center in the old Stewart Library Building, and Grinnell High School Auditorium.
Annie starring Julia Chamberland. Directed by Tom Lacina.
Waiting for Godot. Left to right: Shane Donegan, Jonah Benning-Shorb, Don Bryan, Rob Clower, Johanna Kasimow. Directed by Tom Lacina.