The Upper Darby Performing Arts Center is owned by the Upper Darby School District and supported by Upper Darby Township and operates as a community arts center that draws more than 60,000 audience members annually from all parts of the Greater Philadelphia region. It presents more than 75 annual performances. The Performing Arts Center hosts many professional ensembles each year including The Philadelphia Orchestra, The Three Irish Tenors, The Glenn Miller Orchestra, The Golden Dragons Chinese Acrobats, the Fabulous Greaseband, and a popular annual production of the Nutcracker. The Performing Arts Center produces one of the nation’s most successful youth theater programs, Upper Darby Summer Stage, which presents more than 35 performances each summer involving over 700 young people. In addition, thousands of Upper Darby School District students perform each year as members of the UDHS Band, Choirs, Orchestra, Foundation Galas, elementary school concerts and other events. In its 30 years of existence, the Upper Darby Performing Arts Center has been actively used as a community resource that is unique in Delaware County.
The mission of the Upper Darby Performing Arts Center is:
Upper Darby Summer Stage has earned state and national recognition as a model youth theater program. Celebrating its 35th season in 2010, Upper Darby summer Stage is one of the most successful youth theater programs in the country. It has produced two CD’s featuring music written for Summer Stage shows, and boasts a 75 member staff that is constantly on hand to teach our participants. Each of the six Children’s theater shows, and the Mainstage Show, has its own production staff that includes a professional director, musical director, and choreographer, set and costume designers and a stage manager. While teaching the backstage aspects of theater, the Technical Program provides indispensable support for all the Summer Stage productions and its staff adds a professional look to every show’s sets and costumes. Experienced teachers staff the Apprentice and Studio Classes programs.
The Upper Darby Summer Stage Shooting stars is an outgrowth of the Summer Stage Program and involves up to 45 Summer Stagers in year ‘round performances for the community. The Shooting Stars primary mission is to bring performances to those unable to attend the Performing Arts Center – particularly senior citizens. In addition, the Shooting Stars perform at Rose Tree Park and have been invited to perform at the Philadelphia Thanksgiving Day Parade, on NBC-10’s Live from Longwood Gardens and at other high profile community events. Every two years the Shooting Stars perform in Disney World.
The partnership with Upper Darby Township, Upper Darby School District, the Upper Darby Arts and Education Foundation and many corporate and foundation grants programs has enabled the performing arts center to offer state of the art technology to enhance all productions. The box office offers 24 hour online ticketing and the Performing Arts Center designs its own marketing materials using InDesign software. The theater boasts excellent lighting and sound equipment and grants have helped to provide funding for a new Steinway piano and dance rehearsal space.
UDPAC Website: www.udpac.org
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