East Boston Playhouse to hold first fundraiser Saturday

After five years of successful performances and creating a vibrant East Boston theater scene, organizers of the East Boston Playhouse have dedicated to host its first ever fundraiser this Saturday, Feb. 22 at 7 p.m. at the Beachmont VFW on Bennington Street.
While the evening will help raise money to cover costs of the group’s upcoming plays, organizers said it wouldn’t be an East Boston Playhouse event if there wasn’t a performance to show off the program’s abilities.
“We want to invite everyone this February 22nd at 7 p.m. at the Beachmont VFW to get to know us, learn about how to support and get involved, and also build community all together while laughing at ourselves,” said East Boston Playhouse founder Javiera Lagunas-Álvarez. “We will have raffle prizes, light refreshment, and dancing. But the biggest event of the night will be an original piece put together based on the acclaimed East Boston Open Discussion Facebook group. Some of the posts are too hilarious not to laugh at ourselves, so there will be plenty of mention of parking spaces, tunnel traffic, space savers, and obviously Royals (Roast Beef). But also this is an opportunity for us to celebrate this neighborhood and how supportive and vibrant it is, which reflects in the Facebook group and beyond.”
Back in 2014 Lagunas-Álvarez and Janet Castro wanted to start a theatre company in Eastie. They two put the word out and met Candice Trimble who was planning to start a similar project. Just a few months later, at a small improv night, the trio founded the East Boston Playhouse and started producing shows right away.
“Since then we have produced eight shows, with our ninth, Ken Ludwig’s Moon Over Buffalo, coming up this June,” said Lagunas-Álvarez. “We want to bring the whole theatre experience to our community members. With this model we’ve been able to welcome experienced actors and theatre makers and new actors who’ve started their acting journey with us. We’ve also opened our “doors” to members of all ages, from adults to school age children, which has brought rich, diverse, and inclusive experiences with profound lessons for everyone involved.”
While both Castro and Trimble moved on the program has grown thanks to community members who continue to come back and work with the Playhouse—many becoming Playhouse board members.
“This support has made a huge impact in moving the Playhouse forward, particularly in regards to the challenges we face,” said Lagunas-Álvarez. “As a small community theatre we do not have a physical home, but thanks to the support from other community organizations, we’ve been able to continue operating. For several seasons we have been able to rehearse at the East Boston Social Center and present our shows at Zumix. Both have been an incredible support to continue growing.”
Lagunas-Álvarez said not having their own space has been the biggest challenge as a new community theatre.
“That’s why we are holding our first annual fundraiser, Curtains Up!,” said Lagunas-Álvarez. “We want the community to get to know us more closely, and want to show everything we have been working on and the goals we have. Though our own space is a long term goal, right now we want to have access to storage as our costumes and set pieces grow with each production. We started performing with black boxes and at our last show we were able to have the full front of a house! As these elements increase, we need to store them to build on our productions and make each show better than the last.”

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