Jamie Scott Blakey of Conway AR is appointed the new Artistic Director of The Weekend Theater effective immediately.
“Jamie Scott Blakey is the perfect fit for the position of Artistic Director at The Weekend Theater,” says TWT Board President, Kimberly Labbate. “She has served the theater many times as a director, stage manager, and producer. I have even seen her take the stage for a role if the script demands it. More importantly she represents the heart of the theater and truly believes in our mission of bringing socially conscious theater to our community. She will be a wonderful mentor for the theater in her new role as Artistic Director.”
Jamie Scott Blakey, who has been on TWT Board of Directors since 2006, has over 20 years of theater experience — 15 years of which she acquired primarily at TWT — where she has been directly involved in over 70 productions. She’s directed 27 productions at various theater groups in central Arkansas including The Weekend Theater, Conway Community Arts Association, Conway High School, and Community Theater of Little Rock. She has a degree in Education from Arkansas State University and works full-time at Haught & Wade LLP.
“I am honored to be selected to ‘watch over’ The Weekend Theater during this transitional phase — to uphold our Credo, to do my best to support and empower each volunteer, and to bring quality, honest theatre to our stage,” says Scott Blakey. “As we move into our 23rd Season, I hope to hold true to the things we’ve done right for the last 22 years, and I look forward to exploring new ways of doing things that will carry The Weekend Theater into the future, ensuring that our brand of volunteer theater will continue to make you ‘Laugh. Cry. Think. Act.’ for years to come.”
“I can think of no better person to take the creative reigns of this beautiful theater,” says James Norris, Executive Director. “Jamie Scott Blakey, who was instrumental in moving TWT forward after Ralph Hyman’s retirement, has the experience and passion needed to get the job done, balanced with the heart and compassion essential to producing great theater in a nurturing environment, which is what The Weekend Theater is all about.”
“Jamie will be an excellent Artistic Director because of her love and passion for all that is The Weekend Theater,” says Betty Fernau, Assistant Artistic Director.
In October of 2014, Dr. Ralph Hyman, who co-founded TWT over 23 years ago, retired as TWT’s Artistic Director. Upon his retirement, select members of TWT’s Board and Staff fulfilled immediate artistic over-sight and production duties, while a newly formed Play Selection Committee, made up of Board Members, stake holders and members of the local theater community, began laying the groundwork for what would later become the current, 2015-16 Season lineup.
The story of The Weekend Theater began in 1991 when Ralph Hyman and a small group of local actors and friends recognized there was something missing from the arts community in Central Arkansas. These founding members set out to develop a theater focused on plays and musicals that both examined the way people treat — and mistreat — each other, and created opportunities for personal reflection and growth, as individuals and as a community. In the beginning, they produced their brand of socially conscious plays and musicals at the Unitarian Universalist Church and then at Community Theater of Little Rock. In 1993 they officially founded The Weekend Theater in its current location at 1001 W. 7th St., Little Rock, AR 72201, on the corner of 7th St. and Chester Ave. in downtown Little Rock. Under Hyman’s stewardship, TWT’s dedicated volunteers produced well over 200 plays and musicals, at an average of 10 productions per year — an astonishing number for an all-volunteer driven organization.