Summer Theatre of New Canaan

Recent Articles

‘We Would Like To Exhaust the Opportunities in New Canaan’: Popular Summer Theatre Program Eyes More Traditional Venue

When Ed and Melody Libonati launched Summer Theatre of New Canaan in 2004, they needed about 50 people, including local actors, to put on their live shows—Shakespeare in the restored walled garden at Waveny, and Rodgers & Hammerstein’s “Cinderella” at Saxe Middle School. For the season featuring “Singin’ in the Rain” that closed last week, the longtime town residents required nearly 125 staff members and another 40-plus volunteers to put their performances at the tent in Waveny near the New Canaan High School parking lot. In order to continue its program and move toward a sustainable model, the nonprofit organization now must get to a point where it’s revenue from programming exceeds that which comes in through fundraising, according to Ed Libonati, STONC’s executive producer. “To get on a more sustainable trajectory for our organization, we need a large venue,” he told NewCanaanite.com recently when asked about the future of STONC in town. “We also need to amortize the cost of the people that we hire and we can do that by spreading out over a longer season, as well.”

The demand for STONC’s award-winning shows is there for that longer season, according to Libonati, and a more permanent, traditional facility would allow the organization to meet it. Continue Reading →

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Enchanting and Hilarious: Summer Theatre of New Canaan’s ‘Singin’ in the Rain’

Nothing quite compares to the magic one witnesses as three generations of town residents take their seats beneath a white canvas tent and a welcoming party of fireflies to enjoy a classic musical. This year, that enchanting energy is amplified tenfold with New Canaan Summer Theatre’s production of Singin’ in the Rain, a refreshingly traditional take on the iconic 1952 film. Under direction from Melody Libonati, the show is bursting with joy, and boasts a colorful, beautifully constructed set and committed performances from a  game cast. For the unfamiliar, Singin’ in the Rain follows silent film star Don Lockwood, whose wildly successful career is threatened by the introduction of the “talking picture.” Set in the undeniably romantic world of Old Hollywood, Lockwood must manage such a career transition while also dealing with a difficult leading lady and his growing feelings for a talented ingénue. Continue Reading →

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‘She Is Getting Every Ounce of Performance That These Actors Can Give’: Town Resident Ali Tesluk Makes Professional Directorial Debut with Summer Theatre of New Canaan

Though she’d spent many years singing, dancing and acting—and in live theater programs familiar to New Canaanites, including at the Performing Arts Conservatory on Pine Street, St. Luke’s School Theatre and Summer Theatre of New Canaan—town resident Ali Tesluk came to directing unexpectedly, as a sort of fallback. It was 2014, her senior year in pursuit of a bachelor’s degree in theater arts at Muhlenberg College in Allentown, Penn. Tesluk had a directing class under her belt when went out for the acting part of a gypsy in “The Mystery of Edwin Drood”—a part she didn’t get. “I went to the head of the Theater Department and I asked him for some feedback, and he pretty much said to me, ‘You were so great, you were so great, but the other girl who got the part, it was her turn,’ pretty much,” Tesluk recalled with a smile during an interview in downtown New Canaan on a recent morning, about two miles from the outdoor stage where she soon will make her professional directorial debut. Continue Reading →

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Did You Hear … ?

Jeff Immelt, chairman of the board at General Electric and the company’s CEO (through next month), sold his New Canaan home for $4 million, according to a property transfer logged Wednesday at the Town Clerk’s office. He had purchased a new 10,000-square-foot Colonial on West Road in 2001. ***

A little dog who resides on Old Stamford Road got off-property when someone left a gate open and he found his way to Waveny Pool on a hot and humid day this week. The Havanese mix called ‘Pepe,’ approximately four years old, turned up at the town facility around 11:08 a.m. on Monday, June 19. The pool supervisor contacted police and an owner was located. Continue Reading →

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Camp LiveGirl Empowers, Inspires Fairfield County Middle School Girls

“I am smart, I am strong, I am special,” chanted 100 passionate girls at Camp LiveGirl, which recently concluded its second summer camp session at New Canaan High School. Camp LiveGirl brought together a diverse group of middle school girls from all over Fairfield County for a week of leadership development and empowerment. I had the opportunity to attend Camp LiveGirl and was amazed by the impact that a week of leadership development and empowerment had on the girls. I witnessed transformations from shy, hesitant girls to bubbly, confident girls. I believe the magic ingredient is how LiveGirl facilitates team bonding through hands-on leadership activities, sports, and musical theatre games. Continue Reading →

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