Marilyn Delk

December 12, 2013

Darke County Center for the Arts furnishes excitement, entertainment, education and enrichment to our community. And DCCA can also provide an exciting, entertaining, educational, and enriching answer to your holiday shopping dilemma. If you intend to give a gift of lasting value, I can think of nothing better than a gift of the arts.

Does your list include a youngster between the ages of 3 and 13? Then give tickets to DCCA’s Family Theatre Series. The season opens Jan. 26 with Theatreworks USA’s production of Seussical, a delightful show that will enchant children and engage adults with its imaginative retelling of beloved stories from Dr. Seuss. Condensed for young audiences by the team who conceived and created the Broadway original, the production will impress theatre-going veterans as well as charm those who have never before experienced live theatre.

And a ticket to the show costs an amazingly economical $5! This production plays much larger venues who charge up to 4 times as much. DCCA works hard to keep ticket prices as low as possible, and has been able to maintain the same remarkably low charge for several years due to the sponsorship of local businesses, organizations, and individuals who understand the importance of the arts in establishing and maintaining a healthy, vibrant community.

But wait – there’s more! The Family Theatre Series includes other sensational shows – Lightwire Theatre’s The Ugly Duckling on March 9 and Adventure Theatre MTC’s Five Little Monkeys on April 6. The familiar tale of The Ugly Duckling will be uniquely told, the story acted out on a totally dark stage by human “puppets” wearing cool-looking mechanical costumes illuminated by strips of light; Aesop’s fable The Tortoise and the Hare is also included in the production. In addition to offering an innovative approach to traditional story-telling, the show features plenty of music, dancing, and funny gags.

The well-loved book about monkeys falling off a bed, Five Little Monkeys, is transformed into a fascinating hour-long theatrical production full of comedy and action that will amuse adults as well as captivate youngsters. This fun-for-all-ages show will inspire creativity and create memories that continue long after the curtain falls.

The cost for a ticket to each of these shows is just $5. But wait – that’s not all! A package including tickets to all three shows is available for $12; that’s $4 per show. All Family Theatre performances take place in beautiful, historic Henry St. Clair Memorial Hall, an additional enhancement to a fulfilling encounter with the arts.

If your gift-giving dilemma includes adults, tickets to DCCA’s remaining Artists Series concerts at Memorial Hall offer a possible resolution. Pianist extraordinaire Alpin Hong, legendary singer Melissa Manchester, and Toledo Symphony Orchestra performing the music of Mozart round out the season; any or all of those shows would provide a memorable gift commemorating the joyful spirit of the holiday season.

Upcoming in DCCA’s Coffeehouse Series are “The Un-Valentine Show,” songs of heartbreak, dysfunction, un-forgiveness and revenge performed by the very entertaining duo Jamie Sue Seal and John Latini at the Bistro Off Broadway on February 13, and renowned folksingers and storytellers Kim and Reggie Harris performing their heartwarming and inspiring music at Union City’s Arts Depot on April 3. Tickets to these shows are only $10, so you could extend goodwill to a bunch of friends with your thoughtful and artistic gift.

Any of these one-of-a-kind presents can be obtained by contacting DCCA at 937-547-0908, visiting DCCA’s office on the third floor of Greenville Public Library (office hours 9:30 a.m. - noon and 12:30 – 3:30 p.m. Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays), or going to DCCA’s Website centerforarts.net. Family Theatre Series tickets are also available at Readmore’s Hallmark in downtown Greenville.

Spread Christmas cheer throughout the New Year and beyond. A painless additional method of supporting the arts is offered by AmazonSmile. If you shop on Amazon, you can assist DCCA by going to http://smile.amazon.com/, choosing Darke County Center for the Arts Inc, and simply shopping; .5 percent of your purchase will be donated to your local arts presenter and put to good use within our community.

Marilyn Delk is a Director of the Darke County Center for the Arts and can be reached at marilynd@bright.net. Viewpoints expressed in these opinion pieces are the work of the author. The Daily Advocate does not endorse these viewpoints or the independent activities of the author.