Commonwealth Classic Theatre Company is dedicated to the principle that theatre is a vital component in a civil society. It is the mission of Commonwealth Classic Theatre Company to produce classic and contemporary works that bear witness to the rich variety and commonality of human experience and enhance the appreciation of theatre as a humanizing art form through live performances, workshops, readings and educational programs for the community.
While the heart of CCTC will be classic plays, we will also look to produce contemporary and new works that have something important to say that is universal in theme. Our work will emphasize the power of language, delivering characters and stories that lead our audience on a compelling journey into the now of the play. Our goal is to create theatre that encourages our audience to contemplate the complexity of the human experience, celebrating individuality while recognizing and enhancing what is common in the human condition. But, most importantly, we wish to entertain, to engage and to inspire our audience through the communal experience of theatre.
THE COMPANY - FOUNDING ARTISTS
MARY ANN BALDWIN
PRODUCING ARTISTIC DIRECTOR
Mary Ann has led CCTC from its inception in 2005 until 2016. She will be stepping back into the role of Producing Artistic Director for the 2019 season to produce one of her favorite works by William Shakespeare. As an actor, she performed in numerous off-off Broadway productions in NYC and has had the pleasure of performing on some of the most beautiful stages in Europe before realizing her passion for producing. She has worked as an arts administrator for OBIE award-winning, The New Group; Broadway’s Helen Hayes Theatre and Off-Broadway’s The John Houseman Theatre Center. After a few seasons as General Manager of Philadelphia Shakespeare Festival, she founded CCTC with like-minded artists. A proud member of Actors’ Equity Association, she is grateful and humbled to provide creative platforms for artists that inform, entertain and delight audiences in their own backyard.
Founding Artist/artistic associate
Josh is a Philadelphia-based actor, director and educator, and a member of Actors’ Equity Association. For CCTC, he directed the 2009 Free Theatre in the Parks production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, 2006’s Much Ado About Nothing, Love’s Labors Lost (4-wall MPiRP co-production with Drexel University), and the inaugural “Cool Classics” production of Macbeth in 2013 and most recently, The Lion in Winter in 2016. He holds an M.F.A in acting from the University of Delaware’s Professional Theatre Training Program. As an actor, Josh has performed both locally (White Pines Productions, Curio, Lantern, Hedgerow, Walnut Street Theatre and as Sergius in CCTC’s inaugural production of Arms and the Man, Petruchio in The Taming of the Shrew, LaFleche in The Miser, and the title role in Richard III), regionally (Maine Shakespeare Festival, Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival), and for audiences across the country on two national tours of Romeo and Juliet for Theatreworks/USA.
FOUNDING ARTIST/LITERARY MANAGER
A member of Actors’ Equity Association and Dramatists Guild of America, Paul is an educator teaching high school English and Drama in Chester County. As a playwright, his most recent work, Rage of Achilles, received a full production as part of CCTC's Cool Classics program in 2015. Rage of Achilles also received a workshop presentation at Austin Shakespeare festival and Droit Du Seigneur was produced by CCTC at the 2010 Live Arts and Philadelphia Fringe Festival. His play, Two and Twenty, is published by Samuel French and has been produced nationally and internationally (well, Canada.) His written work has received numerous productions and readings including those by The Acting Company, Salamander Repertory Company and Stillwater Theatre Company in New York City. As an actor he has performed leading roles at the Zachary Scott Theatre (Nominee: B. Iden Payne Award for Outstanding Actor in a Drama 2003), The National Shakespeare Company, Hedgerow Theatre, Classic Works Theatre, American Shakespeare Repertory, New Stagecraft Company etc. With CCTC he has performed the role of Bluntschli in CCTC’s Arms and the Man, Hortensio in The Taming of the Shrew, Peter Quince in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Clarence in Richard III, the Stage Manager in Our Town, and most recently, Orgon in Tartuffe.
FOUNDING ARTIST/CASTING COORDINATOR
Trice is a Philadelphia-based professional actor who has worked with many local companies including, The Philadelphia Shakespeare Theatre, Curio Theatre Company, Luna Theater Company and Peoples Light & Theatre Company. Trice is the company’s Administrative and Artistic Associate and Casting Coordinator. For CCTC, she has performed the roles of Louka in Arms and the Man (2005), Beatrice in Much Ado About Nothing (2006) Kate in The Taming of the Shrew (2008), Mrs. Gibbs in Our Town (2012) and Lady Macbeth in the inaugural “Cool Classics” production of Macbeth (2013).
FOUNDING ARTIST/ASSOCIATE PRODUCER
Jean is a marketing professional with experience in both the for-profit and nonprofit worlds. In addition to her work for CCTC, she was the Marketing Director at The Philadelphia Shakespeare Festival and worked as a marketing consultant for other theaters in the area. Currently she works for Culture Quest Tours which provides educational and cultural travel experiences for High Schools, Colleges and Adults.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Mary Ann Baldwin, President/Treasurer
Jean Harris, Vice President/Secretary
Terry Byrne, General Manager, The Westside Theatres, NYC
Ann Ciccolella, Artistic Director, Austin Shakespeare Festival
Brandon Doemling, Teacher/Director, Bloomfield High School, NJ
Joel Leffert, Co-Artistic Director, Salamander Repertory Co., NYC
Anthony Naylor, Actor (most notably with the RSC)