Well Hidden Theater

Way out in Pontiac exists a place called The Starlight Theater and true to their claim, I think it’s the best theater experience in Oakland County.

You kinda have to get over the fact that it’s a bit far away — it always felt far away being on the other side of town. You also have to kinda get over that it’s in the now mostly defunct Summit Place Mall, if you care to do your shopping before you’re better off going to Great Lakes Crossing unless all you need is a shirt from Kohl’s and a pair of earring from Claire’s.

It’s not your typical theater, crammed in between these two stores and tucked away in a ghostly mall on the outer reaches of Detroit space. But once you’re inside you’ll forget where you are like a foreigner forgets s/he’s in New York upon entering Central Park.

It is community theater, but it’s not hokey, campy, only-the-family-members-could-love-it community theater. It’s great stuff, and the people involved take it seriously. Yes, there is somewhat of a dichotomy between the greater and lesser roles and degrees of talent, but all around the stage sets are well done, the acting is superb – their production of Romeo and Juliet is one of the best I’ve seen in a long while, and the main roles were high school students.

Plus, you have to give props for the sheer breadth and veracity that this theater company exudes. Shakespeare to Musicals to Comedy, they do it all and they only reahearse six weeks to a production to perform six times.

It’s well worth the drive, and for me, it’s a blast to photograph. You’ll find yourself spending more time in Pontiac if you go.

Currently Neil Simon’s Barefoot in the Park has been extended to a third weekend (in recent memory only Cats did that)

Visit their site and….try and forget that the web design looks like it was taken from MySpace. They’re actors, not web designers.


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