Team Teal: A Small-town Performing Arts Facility With a Huge Impact
If you’ve taken a drive down Main Street in Frostburg in the past three years, chances are you’ve noticed the old bank building on the corner of Main and Broadway, adorned with teal lettering, and filled with movement and energy.
This was the home of Mountain City Center for the Arts.
“Was,” because the organization recently moved to their new-and-improved location at 16 Maple St., and while this new building still features all the aesthetic charm of the previous one, it’s what lays inside its doors that matters most.
Mountain City Center for the Arts was first founded back in Sept. of 2013 by Frostburg State University alumna, Coty Warn-Forno. In just two years, the company has flourished, offering a wide variety of classes on acting, dance, and musical theater. They offer courses from beginner up to master classes, and happily welcome those interested in creating.
Mountain City Center For the Arts, affectionally called MCCA, and “Team Teal”, has become an integral part in the Frostburg community. “Before MCCA was founded, Frostburg had almost no performance opportunities for kids or adults who were not associated with the college…since then, we have seen hundreds of kids join the program, which has allowed our town to grow into a more well-rounded community,” says Matthan Potts, a sophomore theatre major at Frostburg State, and a local to the town.
For some, MCCA is more than just a performance opportunity. Maddie Bohrer, a 2016 Frostburg graduate, has been with them since the start. “I started with MCCA when it was first created in Sept. of 2013. I got involved because Jamie McGreevy notified me of the center opening, so I contacted Coty Warn and she interviewed and hired me as an intern.”
Both Potts and Bohrer, as well as Frostburg senior Alex Serrano, had been involved in the performing arts for years prior. Having another opportunity to participate right in Frostburg was an amazing opportunity.
Besides just offering classes and teaching opportunities, MCCA performs throughout the year. This past year, they performed in Frostburg’s Storybook Holiday event, which was performed on Main St. They also put on a Christmas show at Allegany College, as well as other shows throughout the season. Most recently, they performed a fundraiser at the Hen House restaurant.
MCCA is about much more than teaching and refining the fundamentals of dance, according to Serrano, “[MCCA is] home. A place where creative juices and personality can flow without the fear of being judged. There is so much love and positivity swirling throughout MCCA that it is hard to be in a bad mood when you leave. It is such an uplifting environment.”
“MCCA gave me the opportunity to share my love of the arts with my students. It is the greatest joy to be able to inspire and watch my students grow in confidence as well as their technique,” adds Bohrer, when asked how MCCA has impacted her.
Their opinion is shared by Potts, who states, “[MCCA] has not only helped me hone my skills as a performer, but allowed me to make lasting friendships…they allowed me to become who I am.”
The declarations of these three performers are popular…just looking at the testimonials on the MCCA webpage echoes what they’ve said. The passionate endorsements perfectly align with the group’s vision on their webpage as well.
The positive ripples of MCCA seem to be felt throughout the community–from MCCA T-shirts, to car magnets aplenty, to Facebook pages being filled with shared MCCA posts–the pride stemming from it’s members, and spreading through their friends, is almost contagious, and absolutely authentic. Their impact and positivity is not exclusive to them, however. It is a force that’s been felt even by people not involved with them.
“It’s inspiring to see such positivity coming consistently from one organization and to see that warmth spread to the community. Not only has MCCA provided within their own building, they also give back to the community by hosting drives and promoting small businesses,” says Rachel Saylor, a junior at Frostburg, having only heard of MCCA upon her arrival here. Some of MCCA’s most recent donations have been this past week (Sept. 12-16) in which they donated to different causes daily.
Saylor also goes on to praise MCCA’s unbiased support, “Their encouragement of the individual spirit has brought even more life and love to Frostburg!”
Thankfully, MCCA wants to spread the love and positivity! MCCA is holding auditions for adult performers ages 18 and over for the upcoming holiday production, “A Mountain City Christmas.” All Roles are paid positions. “We are looking for positive, hard working, dedicated individuals who love the magic of Christmas.”
Auditions will be held on Sept. 24, 2-4 p.m. at MCCA, located at 16 Maple St. in Frostburg. Please prepare a short a capella Christmas song, a short memorized section of “Twas the Night Before Christmas”, and be prepared to dance.
Show dates are Dec. 16, 17, and 18 at Mountain Ridge High School. To secure an audition slot please email firstname.lastname@example.org
And make sure to check out their website to see even more about this monumental group!