This week’s Director Spotlight is on Paul Pagano.
- What is your name and how old are you?
- My name is Paul Pagano and I am 39 years old.
- What social media links can your fans follow you on?
- You can find me on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Just search for “gcpastl”.
- What hobbies do you have, beside theater of course?
- I don’t have a lot of time for hobbies with a day job and co-running a non-profit, but in the little time left over, I enjoy spending time with my family.
- What do you do for a living when you’re not performing?
- Corporate Training for a financial firm and Executive Director of Gateway Center for Performing Arts.
- How long have you been directing?
- 10 years
- In that time, how shows have you directed?
- I have directed about 15 shows.
- What are your top three favorite shows and roles that you have played?
- In The Heights
- West Side Story
- What are your top 3 shows you would love to direct?
- Mourning Dove
- Sweeney Todd
- What theater companies have you acted with?
- Utah Shakespeare Festival, Rocky Mountain Repertory Theatre, Guthrie Theatre, Children’s Theatre Company, Chanhassen Dinner Theatre, Hey City Theatre, The MUNY, Stages St. Louis, Mustard Seed Theatre, HotCity Theatre.
- What nominations and awards have you received?
- Nominated for Best Director of a Musical- Arts For Life BPAs 2017
In our follow-up conversation, I took a moment to ask Paul about what drives him to stay involved in Community Theatre. He was happy to tell me, “Storytelling makes the world a better place. When we open ourselves to others’ experiences we have a better understanding of humanity.” He continued by saying, “We find we have more in common than we think. ” In regards to directing child in theater, “The earlier we learn the lessons embedded in the stories we tell on stage, the bigger the differences we can make in our communities.”
As we all know, there are many challenges that come with community theater. I asked him what some of those challenges were for him and he immediately said funding. “Most of my directing work has been with the youth theater company I co-founded with my wife, Lori, and friends, Stephanie Fox and Ashleigh Blevins. We created our own work and we have to fund it in one way or another.” He continued by saying, “The work to secure grants is constant so we can continue our work in the community.”
I’m sure we can all agree that funding is definitely a struggle when it comes to community theater. We simply don’t have the budgets that the equity companies have for advertising and procuring talent. We have to rely a lot on the community to support our cause and we are grateful that we have the support we do receive.
Thank you to Paul Pagano for chatting with me and answering my questions. We truly appreciate the work you do. We look forward to seeing your directing talent in the future.
Keep an eye out for productions from Gateway Center for Performing Arts and from Paul. Let us know if you have seen a show that he has directed. We love to hear from fans first hand.