County Seat Theater production takes secondThe County Seat Theater Company of Cloquet recently took second place in the Minnesota Association of Community Theatres (MACT) State Festival with Eric Coble’s drama, “Nightfall With Edgar Allen Poe.”
The County Seat Theater Company of Cloquet recently took second place in the Minnesota Association of Community Theatres (MACT) State Festival with Eric Coble’s drama, “Nightfall With Edgar Allen Poe.”
The bi-annual festival held March 14-17 has spotlighted theaters from across Minnesota for 20 years. This year, nine troupes participated in the festival with a variety of different shows.
“Before our performance, I told this wonderful cast of actors, ‘Live in the moment. Think nothing of the competition. Don’t even think of the past performances at home. Focus on and enjoy this particular moment,’” said Director Cheryl Kramer-Milder. “The emotion was there and made the powerful Poe stories and characters come to life. I was really, really proud of our performance.”
Edgar Allan Poe stands alone in the flickering darkness of his mind, trying desperately to convince himself — and us — that he’s not mad. The spell he weaves brings us a highly theatrical adaptation of three tales Poe considered his best. Poe wrote his most famous poem, “The Raven,” during the agonizing illness and eventual death of his beloved wife, Virginia. “The Pit and the Pendulum” is the study of a man’s desperate attempt to survive a torture chamber during the Spanish Inquisition. “The Tell-Tale Heart” reveals the mind of an obsessed man who attempts the perfect crime.
The County Seat Theater Company earned its second-place (first alternate) finish in the festival with their take on Coble’s drama.
“So many people who are now familiar with County Seat Theater Company came up to us and had such incredible comments and so did all three adjudicators. Our participation in the community theater festivals has given us a great reputation among our peers. We would have loved to have advanced to the next level, but our second-place recognition is a huge honor,” said Kramer-Milder.
Kramer-Milder also received a huge honor herself by being awarded the Fliehr Award. This lifetime achievement award recognizes distinguished service to Minnesota Community Theatre. The award was named in honor of Kay and Richard Fliehr, lifelong community theatre promoters and organizers across the country.
“I was very excited to hear that Cheryl would be receiving this award,” said General Manager Joel Soukkala. “Her dedication to the County Seat Theater has really put us on the map as a theater organization as good as any in the country. With her more than 25 years of service and leadership to our organization alone, she is more than deserving of such an honor.”