Upper Darby Summer Stage is Philadelphia’s Best Theatre Group 5 Years Running

“Come see what a first-rate summer theatre program is capable of”. The quote we just mentioned is one that was used in a review of the main stage musical, Hairspray, at Upper Darby Summer Stage this past summer. However, the one of a kind youth theatre program has proved itself again it seems even though summer has come and gone. Luner on Theatre is happy to announce that Upper Darby Summer Stage has received the My Fox Philly Hotlist Award for the Best Theatre Group in Philadelphia for their fifth consecutive year.

Upper Darby Summer Stage is a nationally recognized youth theatre program that was created in 1976 by Harry Dietzler. The program which has grown in its existence has amounted to having over 700 youth take place in the The program is located in Drexel Hill, Pennsylvania and resides at the Upper Darby Performing Arts Center which is attached to the Upper Darby High School. This past season, Upper Darby Summer Stage had one of their most successful seasons yet. They sold out half their summer and featured a variety of shows including Dora the Explorer LIVE, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, Seussical Jr, Annie Jr, How I Became A Pirate, A Disney Spectacular and Hairspray!

What is Upper Darby Summer Stage?

Upper Darby Summer Stage is one of the nations oldest and most successful theatre program. Each summer, the program sells more than 30,000 tickets to locals providing professional quality entertainment at a family friendly low price. Upper Darby Summer Stage has been voted the Best Theatre Group in Philadelphia for the years 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011. Their win in 2012 not only secures 5 straight years of wins for the program but also emphasizes the importance on arts programs for youth. Summer Stage’s goal is not to create the Broadway stars of tomorrow but instead to form a sense of teamwork, community and collaboration. They do this with the kids through them working on shows guided and being educated by professionals. However, Summer Stage is also about all those childish things we love and miss as we all grow older. I’m talking about things such as imagination, creativity, being yourself, accepting others and filling the world with love.

Harry Dietzler, who created Upper Darby Summer Stage, was honored to receive the Barrymore Award Lifetime Achievement Award in Fall 2011. He was nominated to the committee by a Summer Stage alumni, 30 Rock star Tina Fey. Fey wrote a letter to the committee that described Summer Stage as one of Pennsylvania and the Philadelphia region’s best kept secrets. She invited them to ruin that by spreading the word about this program which they have done. Check out our article on Mr. Dietzler winning the Barrymore Lifetime Achievement Award.

I (Chris Luner) have the lucky experience of being able to work at Upper Darby Summer Stage for the last few years now. I feel truly honored, amazed and blessed to be apart of this incredible organization. I have been lucky enough to work in a variety of positions and currently work as a production assistant to Harry Dietzler and the entire program as a whole. I have been lucky enough to not only sharpen my skills in a field I love but learn something new each and every day. This is what I consider the best part of my job. I am able to learn new things daily while passing on my love of theatre and being able to share that with a younger generation. Upper Darby Summer Stage is hands down the reason why I will spend the rest of my life in the theatre business and I couldn’t thank them more for that.

If you’re wondering just how much magic Upper Darby Summer Stage is possible of in one summer, click here to check out their incredible Summer 2012. If there is one thing I would suggest people to experience, it would be this amazing program. Upper Darby Summer stage is located in Drexel Hill, Pennsylvania  at the Upper Darby Performing Arts Center. If you get the chance come summer time, make your way to a place where you can close your eyes and make-believe, no matter what your age. There is true magic at Upper Darby Summer Stage and you don’t wanna miss out on this. For more information, check out Summer Stage’s Official Website. Also, check out our Luner on Theatre Summer Stage Page. Be sure to check Luner on Theatre on Facebook and Follow Us on Twitter as well! We are constantly updating these pages with information! And of course, check out the rest of Luner on Theatre for all your theatre news you don’t only need but want to know and so much more!

The 2012 Mainstage Cast of Hairspray

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