Saint Anthony Community Theater (SACT) is a non-profit community organization whose mission is to enrich community life by providing access to high quality performing arts opportunities for people of all ages and experience levels; on the stage, behind the scenes, and in the audience.
In 2001 a handful of St. Anthony-New Brighton area parents wanted the community’s kids to have a positive, creative activity during the summer. These parents decided to produce a one-act play during an annual community event called VillageFest.
The play (Bernice Bobs Her Hair) called for about a dozen young-adult and adult performers, but director Kari Steinbach created supporting roles for numerous elementary and secondary students. Performances would take place at the St. Anthony Village High School auditorium.
SACT Shows: Intergenerational
During its early years SACT operated under the umbrella of a non-profit organization called ACTION, which emphasized engaging children and adults in intergenerational activities. In SACT’s early years ACTION provided guidance and financial-management services.
Interest in the theater grew rapidly. In 2004, SACT leadership made two important decisions: to pursue its own non-profit organization status and to produce a show that provided more opportunities for community engagement and intergenerational participation. SACT’s first major musical, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, was a smashing success. By the end of the year SACT was recognized as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, and it has been producing family-friendly shows that continue to attract broad community participation.
SACT Shows: Emphasis on Community
Drawing from local and surrounding communities, SACT’s productions have included actors who have performed on stages throughout the country and professionally in theaters such as Plymouth Playhouse, Chanhassen Dinner Theatres, and the Ordway. But SACT continues to focus on providing opportunities for neighbors to create something together and share it with the community.
For almost every show, casts have had professional actors working alongside first-timers, retirees, business professionals, young adults, youngsters, and entire families. The result is a community built while everyone has fun!
In 2011 SACT produced its first winter show (A Christmas Carol), with a winter production occurring every year since. SACT is now planning seasons and thinking about more ways to engage with the community and develop its presence as the St. Anthony area’s theatrical destination.