Upcoming: Frog and Toad KIDS
July 26 - 27, 2024
Community Based Theatre In Sioux Falls, SD

A Holiday Letter From Our Managing Artistic Director

The performing arts have nearly always been a large part of my life. I started my exploration of performance at church and school from an early age, and dabbled in community theatre. This exploration evolved into a lifelong commitment to be a student and practitioner of theatre. Although not from a majorly artistic family, being a youth from the suburbs of Portland, Oregon, I easily found myself immersed in several opportunities to learn about and perform in or direct theatre. I moved to Los Angeles, California to study musical theatre in college, with a focus on performance but maintained my interest and development as a director and producer. These studies led me to feel confident in my musical theatre fluency, as I focused on aspects of musical theatre history and a variety of performance styles.

Once I moved to New York City, I became immersed in the musical theatre, new play development, cabaret, and new media industries as a multi-faceted performer-director-writer-producer while simultaneously developing a professional career in performing arts recruitment and advising. I have fond memories of many fulfilling creative endeavors where I developed positive working relationships with several inspiring individuals, some of whom I still connect with today. It is quite a special place filled with a lot of motivated art generators.

I arrived at a point where I was hungry to study more about theatre, particularly directing and producing. I removed myself from the busy hubbub of the big city and landed in Vermillion, South Dakota to attend Graduate School at the University of South Dakota. The theatre program strengthened my knowledge and skills as a theatre artist and I earned the opportunity to teach at the collegiate level. I was lucky enough to work as a director and creator in various locations upon graduation, including Vermillion itself at the South Dakota Shakespeare Festival, as well as Virginia, Michigan, and Arkansas. I was in Portland for a brief stint until fate brought me to Sioux Falls to direct The Premiere Playhouse’s Season 19 finale Cabaret.

While directing for this artistically fulfilling project in 2022, a vacancy arrived and the opportunity to create an impact came with it. I have been here serving as your Managing Artistic Director ever since! I do not take the responsibility of my role lightly – I have been working avidly with our talented staff and empowering board of directors to further develop TPP’s positive cultural impact in our community, and I hope it shows. Since the start of Season 20 we have added free and low-cost outreach events and expanded performance programs to our operations, we have further increased our artistic standards and educational components to our productions, we have introduced and increased our free and low-cost educational classes/programs, and we are giving back to other area non-profits, schools and community organizations now more than ever before!

We have gained a strong financial footing, we are working to evolve our fundraising programs, and we are in the process of our long-term strategic planning. I can tell you confidently we are at the cusp of greatness – we just need your help to get there! Please consider making your final tax deductible donation of 2023 to The Premiere Playhouse, a 501(c)(3) organization. As we look to the new year, I invite you to the many exciting events we have coming up in 2024: our second annual Holiday Gala (January 13th), our second annual completely local production The Premiere Premieres (February 15th-18th), our very first Passion Project The Glass Menagerie (March 15th-17th), Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Oklahoma! (April 11th-21st), our Season 21/22 Concert (May 11th), and our Season 21 finale Hair (June 13th-23rd). These endeavors take a lot of time, material and effort to come to life for our audiences. Your donation goes a long way and directly impacts our organization’s ability to bring our community together through theatre and education.

Make your one-time or annual donation to our organization today! If you have interest in funding a specific project, please reach out to me and I’d be happy to walk you through the process and your options. Our programs are made possible through generous donations from individuals like you who are committed to our organization’s mission and vision. I thank you very much for your continued support.

And to answer your question: no, I have never done a production of Oliver! – I would love to though!

Happy Holidays from The Premiere Playhouse,

Oliver Mayes
Managing Artistic Director
The Premiere Playhouse

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