Sunday June 24, 2012

PITTSFIELD -- Gov. Deval Patrick was featured at Saturday's matinee performance of "Fiddler On The Roof" at Barrington Stage Company.

He wasn't playing the fiddle.

The governor was there to announce the dedication of the main stage in the name of the theater company's co-founders: founding artistic director Julieann Boyd and founding board president Mary Ann Quinson.

In brief remarks prior to the start of the matinee performance, Patrick described the Union Street performance ven ue as a "wonderful jewel of the Berkshires and of the state."

"I am pleased to dedicate this stage as the Boyd-Quinson Mainstage of the Barrington Stage Company," he said, with Boyd and Quinson flanking him on either side.

"This was a collaboration that brought Barrington Stage from a high school auditorium to a theater in the center of Pittsfield," he added.

All three were pleased to see the packed house rise for a standing ovation.

Boyd thanked supporters "from the bottom of my heart -- thank you, thank you, thank you."

Quinson also expressed her gratitude.

"I'd like to thank two special people, my husband and Julie's husband," she said. "They've been very patient."

Barrington Stage Company was established in 1995, using the auditorium of Mount Everett Regional High School as its home base.

Having won a number of critical theater awards during the ensuing years, in 2004, Barrington Stage developed and premiered "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee," a musical by William Finn and Rachel Sheinkin. It moved to Broadway in 2005 and eventually won a number of awards, including two Tonys.

Also in 2005, Barrington Stage bought a nearly forgotten vaudeville theater on Union Street in Pittsfield. After renovations, the theater opened in August 2006 with a performance of "Ring ‘Round The Moon." Since 2000, Barrington Stage has premiered 15 plays and musicals.

This was the second dedication for the theater company in two months: In May the troupe dedicated the former VFW Post 448 at 36 Linden Street as the Sydelle and Lee Blatt Performing Arts Center.

To reach Scott Stafford:
sstafford@berkshireeagle.com,
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On Twitter: @BE_SStafford