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  • Member Since:

    August 22, 2008

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    New York, NY

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The Classical Theatre of Harlem (CTH) is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit professional theatre company that was co-founded by Christopher McElroen and Alfred Preisser in February of 1999.

The impetus for the company grew out of the success of a Shakespeare workshop they taught at the Harlem School of the Arts in the fall of 1998. The undertaking quickly became a labor of love as they joined forces with beginning and experienced actors, nascent and long-term theater professionals, supportive community residents, and poured 80 hours of work each week and every spare dime into building a full-fledged professional theatre company.

The Mission of CTH is:

  • To maintain a professional theatre company dedicated to returning the "classics" to the stages of Harlem
  • To create employment and educational outreach opportunities in the theatre arts
  • To create and nurture a new, young, and culturally diverse audience for the "classics"
  • To heighten the awareness of theatre and of great art in Harlem.

Since its founding in 1999, CTH has presented over thirty productions that have included numerous works by Shakespeare, August Wilson's, Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, Euripidies', Medea and Trojan Women, a new stage adaptation of Richard Wright's, Native Son, Derek Walcott's, Dream on Monkey Mountain, Melvin Van Peebles' Ain't Supposed To Die A Natural Death and the company's most striking success, Jean Genet's seminal political drama, The Blacks: A Clown Show, which received four 2003 OBIE Awards.

It is CTH's vision to create the next great American theatre company whose value to its community is inherent and essential, a company that is engaged in producing theatre that has the capacity to change lives and truly reflects the diversity of ideas and racial tapestry that is New York City.

www.classicaltheatreofharlem.o rg

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