History & Mission
History & Mission
History of Hamilton Park Pavilion
The Hamilton Park Pavilion was originally opened on September 9, 1925 at a cost of $75,000. Constructed as a Big Band dance hall, the first musical performer was Johnny Clark and His Orchestra.
Later it was altered and renovated in 1941 by E. Wallace Cone and in 1978 by John Damico. The Pavilion was then used as a rollerskating rink. The floor of the Pavilion is the same floor used, and the circular floorboards can still be seen in the lobby.
In 1991, this historic Hamilton Park Pavilion became home to Seven Angels Theatre. The fledgling non-profit made over $125,000 of renovations using private donation funds, and in the Spring of 1992, the theatre officially opened with the world premiere of the musical Balancing Act.
Seven Angels Theatre, How It All Began…
The seed of Seven Angels began in the City of Angels, when the L.A. writers’ strike of 1988 brought Semina DeLaurentis, an Equity actor working in television, home to Waterbury to await the outcome with her family. While in town, she was asked her opinion and input regarding the city’s cultural growth and if the region could support a professional theatre. Intrigued, Semina found a small performance space at the Mattatuck Museum and decided that it could be adapted for certain shows. She then took her vision to six local business people (family and friends Theresa DeLaurentis, John DeLaurentis, Ellen Guisti, Alan Cipriano, Victoria Stemmer, and James Sullivan) to pitch her idea. Although none of the six had theatre backgrounds, they agreed that a professional theatre was an exciting idea for Waterbury, and together they moved forward with the combined belief that through Semina’s theatre connections, the mission was possible.
Soon after, these “Angels” of the arts proceeded to bring the Off-Broadway hit Nunsense to Waterbury in December 1989. Original cast members, along with the musical director and designer, rounded out Nunsense’s debut in the city. The response was overwhelming with 21 sold-out performances! There were letters, phone calls, a waiting list and requests to “please continue” to bring professional actors and productions to the area. So, in July of 1990. The Angels made the decision to launch Seven Angels Theatre as a non-profit professional regional theatre.
Seven Angels Theatre Mission
The mission of Seven Angels Theatre is to support professional regional theatre on a continuing basis in the Waterbury, Connecticut region; to produce and present quality theatre of fine established plays, musicals, and children’s theatre; to encourage and produce new works; to emphasize priorities of excellence, quality, integrity, and accessibility to the entire community; to provide the means to foster appreciation, participation, and education in the theatre arts, and to promote and foster the performing arts.