How has live theatre or the performing arts enriched your life?

  • Because live theatre is a collaborative art form, it fosters support and provides a sense of family for the participants. Do you have an experience to share behind the scenes?
  • As a patron, experiencing a live theatre production can bring to life the written word. It is a time honored means for the study of literature exploring the human dilemma. It can stir emotions both uplifting and serious. Do you have an experience to share as a patron?

We encourage you to tell your story here. Click here to email your submission with “testimonial” in the subject line. Read on to learn more about how this art form affects lives in a positive way, it is truly magical!

During our talk-back performance of Time Stands Still Josh Sutcliffe, director, offered the following paraphrased comment. “Story telling goes back for centuries. The hunters and gatherers circled around the campfire and there were those who told the stories of the day and passed them down to later generations. We are those story-tellers of our time and I for one feel very fortunate to have such support and such a space to fulfil this creative and necessary function in society.”


Time Stands Still is a play that explores the range of emotions stimulated by relationships, not only the personal ones but also the more obscure societal ones.  I mentioned backstage to Emma and Jennifer that I consider the pivotal line in the play to be one spoken by Emma’s character “and what am I supposed to DO with this information?” (Referencing the atrocities and injustice happening outside of her world.) The conversation prompted Jennifer to say that she had taken those very words to heart and wanted to DO something. As a result she has offered her services providing haircuts to veterans (from Captain Joseph’s House references) at no charge “because this is something I can do!” she said. She also sought out an organization to which she has now pledged $5 per month to provide clean water to communities without. “Because I can do that much.”

This is what theatre has the power to do.


Our new theatre class for children ages 4 to 7, the Jellybeans, held its first class series beginning in September 2017, we had two students, one, Roland had performed in ‘Strictly No Elephants’ and the other, Nathaniel, had seen his sister in ‘Elephants’ and wanted to give it a try . The 10-week session was scheduled to close with a showcase performance on November 14. Several weeks before that date Nathaniel’s family learned of an unexpected death of a dear one and had to leave town during the final two weeks of Jellybeans.

When the parents broke the news to Nathaniel, he FELL APART. His mother told me that he was inconsolable for a half an hour. She also told me how much this class has meant to him, how much it has boosted his self-confidence and general happiness. She said “he’s singing out loud around the house now” “He is expressing himself like never before” “We are completely sold on this program”.

Fortunately, we were able to move the showcase date so that Nathaniel could be there. He and Roland with instructor Lorra Cornetet did a fabulous job on stage. Afterwards at the ‘meet and greet’ the parents once again told us how important this program was to their family.


“My very first on-stage theatre experience was in the recent Second-stage production of TomFoolery. I have loved musical theatre for years, and have been involved several times behind the scenes. Being familiar with Tom Lehrer and his music, I took a chance and auditioned for TomFoolery in March 2016.

“Although I thought I had done reasonably well at the auditions, I was still totally taken by surprise when I was cast into the show. The director, Anna Andersen, and the Music Director, Karen Pritchard, were incredibly patient and supportive throughout the entire production. Being the one beginner on the cast, I worked hard and tried to learn every day, hoping mainly not to let anyone down. By the end of a pretty intense 7-week rehearsal period, I was finally starting to lose the feeling of self-consciousness that I started out struggling with.

“I think the fact that I was not nervous before the performances is testimony to the teaching skills of the directors, as well as the encouragement and support of my fellow cast members. And throughout the process, the Stage Manager Steve Schultz, the backstage crew and the office staff were there filling every need as it came up. Everything seemed to come together in the last week of rehearsals, and the performances were a lot of fun, especially since the last 4 performances were sold out!

“I will no doubt audition for another show at some point. We had more than our share of challenges with this show, but I will remember it as a thoroughly positive experience. I would certainly encourage anyone thinking about it to take the next step and audition! Olympic Theatre Arts has more than earned its reputation as a dedicated supporter of live theatre on the Olympic Peninsula.”


“We put our son into acting classes early on to channel his energy and to insure that he would not have to endure the emotional stress of being shy. We also felt is would be a good tool for building self confidence and self esteem. He was 12 years old at rehearsal for a production of Pippin, when I learned of yet a deeper benefit. I was outside the rehearsal space with other parents waiting there to take our children home. When they began to emerge it was obvious that all of them had been crying! ‘What’s going on?’ I asked! It took a little cajoling, but I finally got my answer. They had been discussing the play and its message so that they would better understand the story they were telling. It’s about a young man coming of age and all of the pitfalls and temptations and choices he must make to shape his life and choose his path. The director had asked them to share with the group, if they wanted, some experiences or obstacles they had encountered in their lives that were now shaping their futures. Well! He told me there were stories of broken homes, attempted suicides, drug dependencies, bullying, you name it! Our son did not share anything with the group because the biggest trauma he had encountered was the recent death of his grandfather and it didn’t seem significant enough compared to everyone else’s stories! Well! As I have said many times since that incident, ‘you can’t buy that kind of therapy.’ Theatre provides an opportunity to learn from literature the study of the human dilemma. It is truly magical.”