Durango has no shortage of super theater, including productions put on by Durango High School’s Troupe 1096, whose shows almost always sell out.
Troupe 1096’s season will kick off in November with their family-friendly production of Disney’s “The Little Mermaid.”
“This is quite possibly the most ambitious season we’ve done since I’ve started, and that’s a lot coming off of the heels of last year’s incredible season,” said Director Ben Mattson. “(‘The Little Mermaid’) is sure to sell fast and be the largest-scale production since ‘Beauty and the Beast.’ We are pulling out all the stops on this train, and planning for something pretty magical for the community.”
Mattson said the community can get involved with the troupe by becoming a patron, which theater-goers may sign up for now during the troupe’s Patron Drive.
“The Patron Drive is our biggest push to help fund all of the shows and activities for the upcoming year. Essentially, it’s a way for people to become ‘season ticket holders’ for the troupe’s upcoming season,” Mattson said. “Having a large influx of money early on in the year helps immensely in budgeting for the season and staying financially ahead of the game as we create our amazing productions.”
And don’t forget the perks that come with being a patron. Subscribers get to select seats for productions before tickets are open to the general public, Mattson said. They may also buy additional tickets above their patron package at a discounted rate. For example, if a patron wanted six tickets to “Little Mermaid” but only wanted two tickets to each of the troupe’s other shows, the patron could get the two-ticket patron package, and when selecting their seats, they would be able to purchase an additional four tickets for “Little Mermaid” at a discount, Mattson said.
Troupe 1096’s supporters also get public appreciation.
“We really love our patrons, so we make sure to mention them in our programs to ensure that we give them our gratitude, and the public can see how many people support this wonderful program,” Mattson said.
To become a patron, visit the troupe’s website, troupe1096.weebly.com, and follow the instructions. Patrons may either print off a form to mail in with payment or pay online with a credit card. Patrons may select a two-, three- or four-ticket package, which includes two, three or four tickets to each show, selecting seats and purchasing additional tickets before tickets go on sale to the general public, Mattson said.
In January, the troupe will stage its Underclassmen Showcase. This is a free event where seniors direct short one-acts starring the underclassmen students of Troupe 1096.
“There is often original material, as well as comedy, drama and a lot of risk-taking. Many parents who come because they have a child in one of the shows come back the next year because the work is so interesting and fresh.
In late February, the troupe will stage “Trap,” written by Stephen Gregg. Mattson said it “is an insane work of theater. The more I say of it, the less impactful the experience. The only thing I will say is that it has horror elements (but still suitable for older kids), that I haven’t seen anything like this in Durango before, and it’s a show that lives up to its name.”
The DHS thespians will finish off the season with “A Chorus Line – High School Edition.”
“A high school version of “A Chorus Line” was recently released, and the students of Troupe 1096 wanted to jump at the chance to produce it,” Mattson said. “We are planning dance camps throughout the year to really bump up the collective dance ability of the troupe, and they are ready to challenge themselves to put on an absolutely stellar closing show for our season!
“It’s a great time to become a patron – our season is going to be epic,” he said.