Youth theater holds a cabaret concert fundraiser

Youth theater holds a cabaret concert fundraiser


MERIDEN — The Meriden Youth Theater celebrated 10 years of cooperation with the Meriden YMCA Saturday evening with a bring-your-own-picnic outdoor concert at the Meriden Green.

The cabaret is the youth theater’s annual fundraiser for upcoming events. This year in particular, funds were being raised for a new permanent space in the Meriden YMCA’s outdoor center.

The cabaret concert featured performances of music ensembles from the last 10 years of the youth theater’s work, explained director Caroline Daniels, of Meriden.

Co-director and alumni Joe Oblon, of Meriden, was excited to announce the youth theater’s upcoming musicals “Sendin’ Out Love” and “Into the Woods,” planned to play in the fall, and “The Lion King,” set to be performed in the spring.

Oblon originally joined the youth theater as a student, in 2002, and continues to return each year, now as a director.

“Doing theater builds character, confidence, friendships and creativity,” Oblon said. “It helps kids become outstanding individuals.”

Josh DeGroff, 15, of Berlin, has taken part in the youth theater for three years.

“I always have a lot of fun,” he said. “Sometimes I get nervous to perform, but I always forget about it once I start.”

Meriden resident Kelly Fuerstenberg volunteered to help with the silent raffle while her daughter performed.

“My daughter’s involvement with MYT keeps her active and provides a structure for her to sing,” she said. “She’s made a lot of friends while doing it, too.”

The youth theater meets weekly year-round, putting on seven performances each year.

“It’s just a family here,” Daniels said. “We sing, we act, we play, we grow, and we learn lifelong skills.”

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