By Mark Matsuura
MSUM mass comm major
There is no stronger art community downtown than at the Fargo Moorhead Community Theatre. Community-run and focused, the theater provides local volunteers opportunities to perform.
The FMCT is showing 10 productions themselves this year. The closest upcoming show at the Fargo Moorhead Community Theatre is “Brighton Beach Memoirs” showing from Sept. 17 to Sept. 26. “Brighton Beach Memoirs” tells the story of a young Jewish boy’s memories from his youth. Opening the following weekend is “I Love you, You’re Perfect, Now Change” from Oct. 1 to Oct. 10. A series of acts explores relationships and love. Tickets for both shows are available for sale online or at the box office at the FMCT.
Volunteers make it happen
The Fargo Moorhead Community Theatre, also known as the FMCT, is a non-profit organization comprised of mostly community volunteers and is run by a small group of full-time staff. Volunteers are the driving force behind the theater and are what make it so successful. Volunteers are involved in every aspect of making the show including: acting, stage-managing, set and costume design and backstage work. Being a non-profit organization, the ticket sales are only to cover operating expenses. The concessions sold during shows go to support the theater’s booster club, which uses its earnings to invest back into the theater to improve equipment.
Community theater history
The FMCT is the largest and longest-running community theater in all of North Dakota. The FMCT has been a staple in the Fargo-Moorhead performing art and entertainment scene for over six decades. It was founded in 1946 and has been operating for 64 years. It is the only year-round operated community theater in North Dakota. The theater is located at 333 Fourth St. S, Fargo, N.D. in Island Park just south of the downtown YMCA. It is a small and intimate theater that has only 344 seats.
Making art more accessible
“We have classes ranging from K to adult held year round,” said Director of Marketing and Education Scott Brushven. A huge goal for the community theater is to make theater available to all ages and abilities. There is something for everyone with the FMCT offering five to 15 classes per semester. To make their classes more accessible to everyone the FMCT offers partial and full scholarships to attend all of their classes through their Providing Opportunities for Student Involvement in Theatre through Innovative and Valuable Education or POSITIVE program. Each student studio theatre class has scholarship opportunities available.
FMCT is truly a community theater
The theater plays hosts to other guest theaters from the local community. Three other theaters produce six more shows that perform at the FMCT this year. This is all part of the FMCT’s dedication to ‘community collaboration’ with local performers. This year the Tin Roof Theatre Company, Music Theatre FM and Bare Stage Theatre are all performing at the FMCT. The FMCT also plays host to many concert performances, art galleries, meetings and weddings.
A full calendar of upcoming shows can be found at: http://www.fmct.org/fmctcstproductions/fmctcalendar.html