Anti-Harassment Policy

  Anti-Harassment Policy Thalian Association Community Theatre (TACT) as an institution, and each of its instructors, creative and administrative board members, cast members and directors are very seriously committed to maintaining a safe and supportive environment where creativity can flourish. The TACT community is here to learn, perform, inspire each other, build careers, foster friendships, and make our lives better through an infinitely rewarding art form. The following policy is in support of those goals, and is in keeping with the values necessary to sustain and support a creative environment. TACT is committed to providing an environment free of discrimination and harassment, where all individuals are treated with respect and dignity, can contribute fully and have equal opportunities. Every person has the right to be free from harassment and discrimination. Harassment and discrimination will not be tolerated, condoned or ignored at TACT. If a claim of harassment or discrimination is proven, disciplinary measures will be applied, up to and including termination of employment, removal from theatre group and or serving as a member of the board. Prohibited Conduct Under This Policy TACT, in compliance with all applicable federal, state and local anti-discrimination and harassment laws and regulations, enforces this policy in accordance with the following definitions and guidelines: Discrimination It is a violation of TACT ’s policy to discriminate in the provision of employment opportunities, benefits or privileges; to create discriminatory work conditions; or to use discriminatory evaluative standards in employment if the basis of that discriminatory treatment is, in whole or in part, the person’s race, color, national origin, age, religion, disability status, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information or marital status. Discrimination of this kind may also be strictly prohibited by a variety of federal, state and local laws, including Title VII of the Civil Rights Act 1964, the Age Discrimination Act of 1975, and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. This policy is intended to comply with the prohibitions stated in these anti-discrimination laws. Discrimination in violation of this policy will be subject to disciplinary measures up to and including termination from community theatre casts, production teams, the board and organization membership. Harassment TACT prohibits harassment of any kind, including sexual harassment, and will take appropriate and immediate action in response to complaints or knowledge of violations of this policy. For purposes of this policy, harassment is any verbal or physical conduct designed to threaten, intimidate or coerce any cast members, production team, board member, or any person working for or on behalf of TACT. Verbal taunting (including racial and ethnic slurs) that, in the employee’s opinion, impairs his or her ability to perform his or her job is included in the definition of harassment. The following examples of harassment are intended to be guidelines and are not exclusive when determining whether there has been a violation of this policy: • Verbal harassment includes comments that are offensive or unwelcome regarding a person’s nationality, origin, race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, age, body, disability or … » Continue Reading

Production Pictures

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Our History

Thalian Association Community Theatre, Wilmington, North Carolina The Thalian Association, today known as Thalian Association Community Theatre, is an amateur community theatre company located in Wilmington, North Carolina. It is notable for being the oldest theatre company in North Carolina and possibly the oldest still in existence in the United States. Whether it is actually the oldest in the United States remains to be confirmed, but claims of that distinction have been made since at least 1892. The date of its founding cannot today be placed exactly, but a founding date of 1788 has been accepted by Association members since at least 1858, a date when there were people alive who knew the founders. The earliest known document referring to the Thalian Association is dated 1805. Thalian Name The Thalian Association at its founding took its name from Thalia the Greek goddess of comedy. The name “Thalian” apparently was popular in early America as there are known to have been other Thalian Associations and Thalian Societies, most of them long since defunct. For example, there was in the early 1800s a Thalian Association in Fayetteville, North Carolina, but it no longer exists, and little is known about it. Fayetteville lies up the Cape Fear River, with Wilmington being the port near the mouth of the river, and in antebellum days there was close contact by riverboat between the two cities. This would suggest the possibility of close ties between the two Thalian Associations, but nothing is known about this possibility today. There is a Thalian Society still in existence at Oglethorpe University that dates to 1839 as a literary and debating society. On the Old Oglethorpe campus in Millegeville, Georgia there is a Thalian Hall whose construction date is said to be in the 1850s. Thalian Heritage The claim to be the oldest theatre company in America is a hard claim to prove, with other theater companies making the same claim. The uncertainty of rival claims is due not only to the loss of much old documentation but also to a lack of precision in defining what is meant by the idea of “theatre.” The word theatre is used to mean both a performance hall and a production company of theatrical events. These two entities, even when they reside together, may not have the same founding date. This source of uncertainty can be illustrated by comparing the Thalian Association with the renowned Walnut Street Theatre in Philadelphia. The Walnut Street Theatre also claims to be the oldest theater in America, citing a founding date of 1809 based on the construction of their performance hall which still stands at 825 Walnut Street in Philadelphia. The Walnut Street Theatre production company resides today within their performance hall but was not founded until much later, with the performance hall originally used for circus acts. The Thalian Association’s claim of 1788 is the date of the creation of the production company. Thalian Hall, the Association’s performance hall, was not built until 1858 and still … » Continue Reading

HBHUSO/Community Arts Center

Hannah Block Historic USO/Community Arts Center For more than half a century, the Hannah Block Historic USO Building has facilitated the coming together of generations, providing children with programs that challenge them creatively, and enhance the quality of life for residents throughout the region. Located in the Hannah Block Historic USO at 120 South Second Street in historic downtown Wilmington, NC, the multi-use facility features six studios (including dance studios) that are available to nonprofit organizations for rehearsals of plays, musicals and recitals. The studios are also used for classes in a variety of artistic disciplines. The building is home to the Orange Street Potters and the Hannah Block Second Street Stage, an auditorium with a stage and technical loft used for rehearsals and performances. The facility includes a kitchen and may also be rented for corporate and private functions. The HBHUSO/CAC is owned by the City of Wilmington and managed by the Thalian Association Community Theatre. The City Council appoints a seven person volunteer Advisory Board to oversee the building activities and make recommendations to the management and the City of Wilmington. The current Advisory Board chairman is Ev Smith. Patrons of the HBHUSO/Community Arts Center can park in the surface lot conveniently located next to the building. For more information about Wilmington and the arts, please visit The Arts Council of Wilmington, another organization dedicated to helping establish our area as an arts destination and to promote arts-driven economic development.

About Us

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Thalian Association Community Theatre is a non-profit, membership organization that’s dedicated to enhancing the rich artistic environment of the Cape Fear region.  Tracing its roots back to 1788, the Thalian Association Community Theatre was founded to provide arts education and bring the excitement of the performing arts to Wilmington, North Carolina. Today the Thalian Association Community Theatre produces five major productions annually on the Main Stage at historic Thalian Hall, offers a Youth Theatre program and professionally manages the Hannah Block Historic USO/Community Arts Center for the City of Wilmington. North Carolina’s Official Community Theatre   In 2007, the North Carolina legislature named the Thalian Association Community Threater the Official Community Theater of North Carolina. In an official ceremony held in Wilmington, Secretary of State Elaine Marshall emphasized that our organization’s prestigious title was not a distinction given lightly. “This is truly unique,” Marshall said. “But what this really does is honor a tradition of inspiring people, helping children, healing a community, all the things that the performing arts and an association to support that can mean.” Members elect the volunteer Board of Directors for the Thalian Association Community Theatre, and our Board elects our officers.  Salaried positions include: Executive Director, Artistic Director, and Community Arts Center Director/Operations Coordinator, with all other manpower coming from scores of loyal volunteers.  Membership in the community theatre organization is enjoyed by hundreds of Wilmingtonians as well as patrons from throughout the region. Thalian Association Community Theatre Productions Thalian Association Community Theatre produces five major productions annually on the Main Stage at historic Thalian Hall. In fact,  Thalian Hall was proudly named for our organization in 1858. Our mission is to present quality live theater that illuminates the human experience for the citizens of Wilmington, New Hanover County and beyond. All of our productions are cast through auditions which are open to the general public. Through the years thousands of local actors, directors, choreographers, conductors, musicians, designers and technicians have enjoyed the opportunity to develop their craft working with the Thalian Association Community Theatre. We were voted Wilmington’s Best Theatre Company in 2006 by the readers of Encore, the Cape Fear guide to arts and entertainment and have since reclaimed that title for many subsequent years.  Youth Theatre   Our Youth Theatre was founded in 1979 and offers training and performance opportunities for children ages 7 through 18 or high school seniors. Young people may choose to be involved on stage as actors, in the orchestra pit as musicians, or back stage as a part of our design and production team.  Auditions are open to all children aged 7 through high school seniors, unless otherwise noted.   Our mission is to teach life skills through theater education and provide an outlet for artists and technicians to develop and exercise their crafts.  Community Events Thalian Association Community Theatre has managed the Hannah Block Historic USO/Community Arts Center for the City of Wilmington since 1994 and offer rehearsal and classroom space at little to no charge for visual & … » Continue Reading

The Community Arts Center

The Thalian Association manages the Hannah Block Historic USO/Community Arts Center. The center is a major cultural resource for New Hanover County and is a historic landmark for southeastern North Carolina. Visit the Web site.   History   Hundreds of thousands of armed forces personnel that trained in the Wilmington area, made the USO Center their principal off-duty destination. Service members from the Army antiaircraft artillery base at Camp Davis (Holly Ridge), the Marine training facility at Camp Lejeune (Jacksonville), the Army airborne center at Fort Bragg (Fayetteville), and many other installations came to the USO facility for dancing, recreation and entertainment.   From 1941 to 1945, the community hosted visitors in uniform at the rate of 35,000 every week. To help local citizens handle this enormous challenge, the federal government constructed two civic centers for use by the United Service Organizations, Inc.   A nonprofit voluntary agency, still in existence today, the USO supported military families through social programs and entertainment. It also provided activities for defense workers in industries such as the North Carolina Shipbuilding Company, which built Liberty ships on the Cape Fear River, and the Ethyl-Dow Chemical Plant in Kure Beach, which manufactured an additive used in gasoline.   The Second and Orange USO Club was erected by the Army Corps of Engineers at a cost of $80,000, the modern equivalent of $4,000,000. Along with an identical structure at 901 Nixon Street for African-American servicemen, it opened in December 1941, the same month that the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor. The USO eventually operated nine full-time centers in New Hanover County, including clubs in Wilmington, Wrightsville Beach, and Carolina Beach. Five smaller facilities brought the total to 14. One center was built in Southport, Brunswick County.   The club was run by four charitable agencies affiliated with the USO: the YMCA, YWCA, National Jewish Welfare Board, and National Travelers Aid Association. Volunteers kept the building open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. At the height of the war, attendance reached 63,000 per month. Typical events included “big band” dances, plays, music recitals, art exhibits, hobby shows, guest lectures, wedding receptions, and weekly radio broadcasts. On weekend nights, 600 men crowded into the basement dormitory. A help desk provided assistance in locating accommodations for temporary visitors. The canteen in the lobby dispensed the two commodities for which the USO was most renowned – coffee and doughnuts.     When the USO ended its full-time operations in 1946, the city purchased the building for use by the Department of Recreation, now known as Parks and Recreation. Renamed the Community Center, it presented daily programs for children and young adults. Groups such as the Thalian Association and Wilmington College, the predecessor of UNCW, also utilized the facility.     In 1948, the Community Center hosted the opening ceremony of the First Azalea Festival. Founded by Hugh Morton and Dr. W. Houston Moore, the Festival drew 75,000 visitors to Wilmington to witness such scenic attractions as Greenfield Lake, Airlie … » Continue Reading