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May 2017 Meeting - Mountain Play & Theater

May 10 2017

Sara Pearson, Executive Director & Producer

Marin County's Unique Mountain Play & Theater

100+ Years of Theater on the Mountain

 

 

Marinites love their mountain. One quintessential rite of spring for more than a century has been a trek to the top. People have gotten there by hiking, riding on the gravity train that used to climb the mountain, pedaling a bike or riding, in a yellow school bus. It's a perfect way to take a picnic, enjoy the scenic views, and see the Mountain Play. Established in 1913 as a part of the outdoor theater movement, the award-winning Mountain Play Association (MPA) has brought live theater to four generations of theater goers. 

The Mountain Theater is located in a unique natural amphitheater. Congressman William Kent, original owner of the site, was a founding member of the Mountain Play Association’s board of directors. He deeded the site to the MPA which held the deed until 1936, when the land was donated to California to complete Mount Tamalpais State Park. In the 1930's, the Civilian Conservation Corps, a public work relief program that created jobs during the Great Depression, installed granite stone seating to accommodate 4,000 people.

Sara Pearson, Executive Director & Producer of MPA, is the current keeper of the flame. This season’s productions of Beauty and the Beast and Hair will be Sara's tenth at the helm. Prior to joining the staff in 2007, she served a six-year term as a member of the Board of Directors. Sara has 30+ years of experience working in fundraising and non-profit management with a variety of Bay Area organizations including Marin Agricultural Land Trust, Marin Conservation Corps, and Mother Jones Magazine.  

 

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