As it begins its tenth season of producing quality performances and educational theater programs for children and teens in Connecticut, NBYT is making some big changes! One change is moving home to New Britain. The theater has just moved its office and studio theater into a new space within the South Church campus at 90 Main Street. The buildings at South Church are shared not only by churches, but also by community nonprofits and other arts organizations. We’re really pleased to have found a home there!
The other big change is hiring a new Managing Director.
Beginning this month, Ed Richters takes on the new title. Ed is an Eagle Scout, CPA, and once built a comedy club in his basement, because he always needs a project. Ed just left the corporate world after being a professional accountant for nearly fifteen years, during which time his focuses were not-for-profits and affordable housing. Ed is also a trained improviser and performs regularly at the Sea Tea Comedy Theater in Hartford with his teams Robot Love and Wry BrEd. In June this year, Ed played Tony in a production of You Can’t Take It With You in Glastonbury. He has also written, produced, and performed in three sketch comedy shows at the Hole in the Wall Theater with his troupe History of the Future. Ed also likes to create workshops and classes for all ages based on improv, science, and business, he hosts stand-up comedy shows, and he periodically runs charity events. Ed holds a BS in Accounting from the University of Rhode Island and is a Certified CPA in the state of Connecticut. His unique skillset as a performer and financial professional will help to guide NBYT successfully into its next ten years and beyond!
Ed will share leadership of NBYT with Nicki LaPorte, who became Artistic Director in May of this year. Together, they replace outgoing Executive and Artistic Director Darren Farrington, who co-founded the group in 2010, and who is staying with the theater during the transition as Executive Director Emeritus.
Five Questions for Ed
How did you first get involved in theater?
Like so many others I got into theater to be closer to my girlfriend at the time. One relationship clearly lasted longer than the other. (Ed is engaged to NBYT Teaching Artist and Director Brooke Ferguson.)
What excites you the most about coming to NBYT?
I am excited to join NBYT, because I am happy to be more professionally connected to my passion while helping bring unique experiences to kids.
If you could meet a character from any play, who would you choose and why?
I really enjoy Feste the clown from Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night. His tactics might be severe, but I appreciate how he used Malvolio’s ego against him to exact some petty revenge. Suffice to say, I’ve always been suspicious of letters asking me to appear cross-gartered.
What’s your favorite dessert?
Mochi ice cream. Little pockets of goodness.
What advice do you have for kids who want to be performers?
To the kids who want to be performers, the road is hard, but you will be a better human for it. This world is currently lacking in those willing to take on the task of exploring their inner selves and the extreme growth that can come with it. You will need to be vulnerable for your craft, but steely enough to weather the storms that come with being a professional artist. But I believe in you. You’ve got what it takes.