Center Stage Theatre Building Community Fund

Est. 2023 by the Center Stage Theatre.

Center Stage Theatre

Center Stage Theatre is more than just performances and educational opportunities; it’s a civic instrument that builds community and spreads the arts beyond geographic boundaries. 

The theater in Shelton is a local cultural gem that has been entertaining and inspiring the community since 2005. The history of this beloved theater traces its founding to Gary and Francesca Scarpa, a visionary couple whose dream ignited the spark that would become a beacon of the performing arts in the Valley. 

In 2023, a new act of the theater’s history began when Center Stage established the Center Stage Theatre Building Community Fund -- a donor designated fund -- to honor the theater’s dedicated volunteers and promote its mission to high-quality theatrical productions, performing arts education and meaningful volunteer opportunities. 

“Our volunteers are the heart and soul of the theater as we know it today,” said Carla Supersano Sullivan, the theater’s Managing Director. “Their passion, dedication, and hard work have been instrumental in shaping the Center Stage Theatre into the vibrant theatrical entity and community it is.” 

Sullivan said volunteers have always worked tirelessly for every production, ensuring that each show dazzles and leaves a lasting impact. The fund is truly inspired by the indomitable spirit of devoted volunteers, she said, like John Corraro and Justin Zenchuk. 

Corraro, currently the theater’s Board Chair, and Zenchuk, the theater’s Technical Director, began their journey with Center Stage as pre-teens through the theater’s camp program and never left. Sullivan said over the years, they have gone above and beyond, especially during tough times, such as during the COVID-19 pandemic, to keep the theater alive and flourishing. 

“John and Justin are two of hundreds of volunteers that help us each year, both on stage and behind the scenes,” Sullivan said. “This fund will be used to acknowledge and support volunteers and their contributions so that Center Stage will continue to shine.” 

Throughout the years, Center Stage has grown into a regional cultural hub, producing five full-scale productions annually, including its Youth CONNection summer musical that features a cast of high school and college students. Beyond the mainstage productions, the theater’s commitment to education shines through a wide range of programs for students in grades K-12. From theater arts classes in acting, singing, and dancing to Junior Musicals and opportunities to volunteer backstage, they cultivate the next generation of Valley performers and artists. 

“This fund is really about recognizing and thanking all the individuals, past, present and future, who have selflessly given their time and talent,” Sullivan said. “We hope others will join us in acknowledging these wonderful volunteers and how the theater is building community one performance at a time.” 

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Center Stage Theatre Building Community Fund