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The Aliso Niguel Theatre Company was founded in September of 2011 with the arrival of Mr. Jeremy Golden as drama teacher and department head. This was no leisurely transition for teacher and students alike as there was already a show in production (You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown) which had been cast by the previous director before Mr. Golden entered the scene. While it was difficult for all to adjust to the changes, students very quickly discovered that the expertise and leadership Mr. Golden offered was invaluable and that they were in for an exciting and successful year. You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown went off without any further hitches and was a large success. With the conclusion of this production, Mr. Golden decided to form the Aliso Niguel Theatre Company with the intention that it would be primarily student run.
While most high schools have their own drama departments that are run by teachers, it is seldom that high school students undertake the challenge of starting their own company and the responsibilities that come with it. The formation of the company required that the current drama board be reformed to include a larger number of positions that were more specific to the jobs they entailed. This included the position of “Thespian Society President” being split into “Artistic Director” and “Managing Director” so that two students could use their individual strengths to work together to oversee some of the most important parts of the company and double the thought behind important decisions.
The first production put on by the Aliso Niguel Theatre Company was Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, a tragicomedy based off of Shakespeare’s Hamlet by Tom Stoppard. The show was a success and an excellent testament to the potential of the new company. The Company’s first musical was Bye Bye Birdie by Michael Stewart. This classic story is based off of American society in the 1950s, the phenomenon that was Elvis Presley, and the hysteria that came with his draft notice. The show sold out three of the four performances, an unprecedented feat, which inspired all involved to reach for even larger goals, and was the perfect conclusion to the company’s first year.
As of today, the Aliso Niguel Theatre Company has produced many more productions (which can be explored in detail under the Plays and Musicals tab) and has done things many considered impossible. All involved with the company are exceptionally proud of its success and aspire to continue to produce quality theatre, as well as provide a community for students to thrive and pursue what they love.
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