Stage Left is the little theater that could. At least so far, its artistic director says.
“We couldn’t be happier the way things are progressing,” Pete Pagliaro said last week.
In November, the city commission approved a lease for the nonprofit troupe, formerly the Royal Palm Beach-based Royal Playhouse, to stage live plays and musical productions through June 2014 at the Madsen Center, two blocks south of city hall at 145 S.E. 2nd Ave.
The group hopes to stage a total of five plays, with eight to 10 performances of each.
It had its opening night Feb. 8, with Neil Simon’s “I Ought to Be in Pictures.” That ran through Feb. 22.
“Much to our surprise, it was a major success,” Pagliaro said. “We filled almost all seats for every performance of the show. We never expected that, being new to the community.”
“Last of the Red Hot Lovers,” another Simon play, opens Friday and runs through April 27.
He said next fall’s calendar will feature two plays and two musicals.
Under its deal, Stage Left pays $1 a month in rent, plus utilities. The city’s community redevelopment agency split the $6,046 cost of renovating the theater interior.
Both the theater and the city have said the deal could lead to the city becoming the group’s permanent home. Pagliaro said Stage Left and residents already have created a theater guild.
“As far as I know, it’s been very successful, and we’re very happy to have our own theater here in Boynton Beach,” assistant city manager Carisse LeJeune said.
Stage Left will produce a large children’s show in July and has booked visits from 10 large summer camps from the Palm Beach County School District, Pagliaro said.
“The most exciting thing is we are finally getting our children’s workshop classes started,” Pagliaro said.
He said he has hired Jeannette Alfaro, a professional drama teacher, who will work with the children ages 6 to 18.
The cost is $375 per eight-week session of two classes each week, of one hour to 90 minutes.
Pagliaro said Stage Left also hopes to teach a workshop class of “theater improv” with the older teenagers and start an improvisational performance group.
The next production of the Stage Left community theater is Neil Simon’s “Last Of The Red Hot Lovers.” Evening performances are at 8:05 p.m. April 12, 13, 19, 20, 26 and 27; matinees at 2:30 P.M., April 14 & 21. Tickets are on saleat the box office at the Madsen Center, 145 S.E. 2 Ave. Call (561) 301-5404.