In 1995 Dan and Anita Almich formed New Artists Productions, Inc. with the intent of providing opportunities for youth through the Performance Arts. They funded the activities personally at no expense to the participants. It began as an audio recording organization helping young people and youth organizations make video tapes, audition tapes and CD’s – mostly needed and required by youth auditioning for competitions and/or college.
Because of their involvement with the youth in the community, Dan and Anita were enlisted to help the Bandon Playhouse produce a play entitled: “No Wrinkles, New Wrinkles”. the play needed young actors/vocalists for the first act and adults in the second. This play was brought to the Sprague Community Theater stage in 2002.
After that, when the drama program at Bandon High School was eliminated from the curriculum due to budget constraints, the Almichs were encouraged by some of the youth performers in “No Wrinkles, New Wrinkles” to take on the drama program. So the Almichs decided to expand their organization’s offerings by absorbing the drama program and continuing the offering to the youth of the community.
Our goals have always been to teach youth through all aspects of theater – acting, make-up, stagecraft, directing, producing, stage lighting and sound, scenery design, and set construction. New Artists Productions seeks to be the helping hand up by providing recording services, stage opportunities, and financial assistance to worthy young artists.
Our 2015 season will bring two additional productions to the stage with an anticipated involvement of the 50 active performers and possibly 10 new performers. We are a busy group and what we offer attracts kids from all over Coos and Curry Counties: Bandon, Coos Bay, Coquille, Myrtle Point, Langlois, North Bend, Port Orford, Sixes, and Brookings, Oregon. Participants in our program attend public school, private schools, or are home-schooled. What we offer either provides further education or fills a void for educational opportunities.
To this day, New Artists Productions continues to produce music recitals, variety shows, dramatic plays, and musical plays – again, all at no expense to the student participants. Summer workshops, replaced by a Summer production with equivalent education, provided insight into such specialties as mime, make up, improvisation, acting skills, set and drop fabrication, as well as becoming aware of the many elements of theatrical production.
In small town America, young people are struggling to find their identity and find meaningful things to do with the time and creativity. Many school districts, particularly in rural communities, are cutting courses from their curricula to meet tighter budgets. These cuts tend to occur in areas where kids most often find their identity – drama, art, music, choir, speech, dance, etc. These areas are often times the reason kids stay in school.
There is an old saying, ‘Reading, Writing, and Arithmetic’ is what we do; ‘The Arts’ is what we do it for.” New Artists Productions seeks to encourage young talent in their pursuits of Performance Arts while developing self-awareness, self-esteem, and self-confidence. The adventure of youth theater provides the student with the opportunity to become aware of their own personality characteristics. This self-awareness is the discovery of their strengths and weaknesses. As they conquer the challenges of performance, each student gains a new level of self-esteem. Recognizing their new found personal value is the catalyst that builds self-confidence. It is the individual assurance of self-confidence that provides the power from which many future successes will stem.
As a year-round program, New Artists Productions produces major productions in the spring and fall of the year and focuses on developing theatrical skills and stage craft keyed to future productions. Some productions have toured other communities within the State. As opportunities present themselves, field trips are taken to observe other theatrical productions or tour production facilities.
Our program is supported through private donation, business sponsorship, ticket sales, and limited grant funding.