Folsom Theatre Company to offer youth opportunitiesBy: Rachel Zirin, Senior Reporter
Folsom Theatre Company
330 Palladio Parkway, Suite 2075
With impacted local youth theater programs, Folsom Theatre Company is here to help.
Founder and CEO Tracy Rodriguez and her business partner Monique Freed, vice president of the Board of Directors, recently started a new theater company in Folsom, and they have hit the ground running.
“I’m fairly new to the area, but immediately upon arriving, I realized there is a great love of performing arts for the youth here; however, it’s very impacted, and people are driving great lengths to have opportunities,” Rodriguez said. “With that being said, we decided we were going to take on the huge task of bringing more opportunities to the youth here in Folsom.”
Rodriguez said her family moved to the area in last June, and she filed for her business license in August.
“When I moved here, the classes were impacted and I wanted to keep my children local in the community, and I wanted that for all the children in the community,” she said. “We were even here two months before I filed for my business license.”
Rodriguez met Freed through past theater productions where things for them just clicked into place. They both bonded over their love of theater and children.
“Our children have acted together in other productions, and I immediately saw Monique as a gold mine,” Rodriguez said. “She is the type of person who is backstage helping every kid. She is Mary Poppins. Who doesn’t want Mary Poppins on their side? You ask her to pull something out of her bag and she has it. You ask someone to give 100 percent, my Monique gives 1,000 percent. She’s been here along the ride from the very beginning. I am so thankful for her.”
Located in the Palladio, the Folsom Theatre Company will offer full productions to local youth between the ages of 6 and 18 years. In addition, the company will also offer private lessons such as choir, vocals, dance, choreography and more, starting this coming summer.
“We will have a large youth choir workshop this summer, and in fall, we will start the actual choir,” said Talia Vlaovich, music director for the Folsom Theatre Company.
The first production the Folsom Theatre Company has planned will be “Into the Woods,” and plans are already underway, as the theater company recently just finished auditions and selected their cast. The production will be June 28 through June 30 at Cordova High School’s new state-of-the-art theatre.
Rodriguez said she plans to have the productions at various theatres to give the youth an opportunity to learn as much as they can.
“I don’t want to stay at one theater; I want to give the opportunity to different theaters in the community, such as Folsom High School, The Harris Center and other stages,” she said. “We want our youth to get the opportunity to experience different theaters, back stages, sound systems, etc. We want them to learn different techniques about different theaters.”
When asked what she is looking forward to with the future of the theater company, Rodriguez said giving back to the community.
“I have been here for a short amount of time and I have been immersed in the community. Folsom is magical. I have been to every state, and Folsom has something really special about it,” she said. “Since I moved here, I have gotten so much in such a short amount of time, so I’m excited to give back to the community through theater.”
Vlaovich said she has lived in the area for 15 years and this theater company is exactly what was missing.
“I haven’t seen anything quite like this,” she said. “I’m excited that there is something for the community by the community in the performing arts area because it has been lacking for years.”
Freed said it is all about the children.
“I am really looking forward to working with the children,” she said. “I like being around the kids’ energy and just having fun with them.”
The Palladio welcomed the theater company to the shopping center by making them a community partner.
“I just want to thank the people who are willing to partner with us to help get this up and running. It takes a community to do this. We are so thankful the Palladio has allowed us to come in here and be a part of their community. The Folsom chamber has been instrumental in getting us off the ground. More importantly, I want to thank the parents,” Rodriguez said. “They are everything. They are our volunteers, they are going to be the ones who makes this production what it is. It’s a community effort.”
Freed said it’s so important to them that the community has already put faith in them to let all the children shine.
The Folsom Theatre Company will offer the production “Annie” in the fall. Nearing August, they will announce their 2019 production schedule.