"As a professional actor who grew up in Gig Harbor, I trace many of the skills I use most often—in auditions, rehearsal, and performance—to my time with Paradise Theatre. The impact that Jeff and Vicki Richards has had on my life is immeasurable. They introduced me to performing when I was six years old, and I’ve known since then that I would be an actor. The skills and the confidence that I learned as a child performing under their direction were invaluable lessons that I keep close to me today as an artist and a human. I am so lucky to have had an opportunity as a child to be part of something that mattered, that people were depending on me for in very real ways. The impact that this theatre has had on my life as a professional is profound, of course, but had I not been pursuing this it still would have been such a positive influence. Paradise provided me with an opportunity to perform for my community, with my friends—and indeed, often with my parents—bonding experiences I’ll never forget. This company provides opportunities that can’t be found elsewhere in the Gig Harbor community. I am so grateful to have had Paradise as a part of my life, and it is important that it be around for future generations as well."
Krista Curry, Professional Actor
“Paradise Theatre has been an amazing constant in Gig Harbor. The endless dedication of Jeff and Vicki Richards has provided more than just entertainment to the greater Gig Harbor area, they have provided countess opportunity for our young students to express themselves and experience the thrill of participating in live theater. Cities thrive with an active arts community and Paradise Theatre provides that and more for each of us. Please help support this wonderful group.”
Marla Morgan, Hands on Art
“Just a note of thanks to Jeff and Vicki Richards for their contribution to our community. As a former Pierce County Councilmember and now Executive Director of PenMet Parks I have watched the positive impacts the Paradise Theatre and their leadership has had on the youth in our community.
I'm a firm believer in the motto 'ounce of prevention or a pound of cure' and as a councilman for Pierce County I struggled annually with having to give 80 cents of every discretionary tax dollar to Public Safety and Criminal Justice. It's people like Jeff and Vicki and programs like Paradise Theatre and youth ministries that make up that ounce of prevention and save taxpayers the pound of cure we're forced to pay in our Juvenile Justice System.
On a personal note when our son Cooper was a youngster he was exposed to the good work that Jeff and Vicki were doing at Chapel Hill Church and he wanted to be a part of that experience and although he was in sports in the community this ministry brought out another side of Coop as he performed on stage with his friends under the watchful eyes of Jeff and Vicki, we will always cherish those memories and are anxiously anticipating that Coop's 3 little girls, our granddaughter’s, will show the same interests.
As we now work together to understand what the future of culture in our community looks like it's important to remember the contributions that the Paradise Theatre has made in economic development and the huge community impact its had. More than 80 shows and performances annually, nearly 100% subscriber renewal and a long list of partnerships with local restaurants and hotels, not to forget the only live community theater. Jeff and Vicki have been very generous in their gift to our community, it's now time for the community to give back. Help them help our local children and young adults to be all they can be.”
Terry Lee, Executive Director, PenMet Parks
“From my experience The Paradise Theatre is a place where anyone and everyone can enjoy the joys of Community theater from both sides of the Stage. The dancing, the singing, the set design & construction, the technical aspects of lighting and sound transmission, the stage frolics..……….it is available for all.”
George Edman, Small Business Owner.
“My family has been involved with Paradise Theatre family since its inception 15 years ago. I’ve probably been in more than 20 shows over the years and it has been a wonderful part of my life. I have seen hundreds of kids and adults learn, grow, and mature. I’ve seen shy, introverted people develop into confident, artistic performers. The training and experiences acquired through Paradise’s shows and educational programs cannot be measured, but it can be felt in your heart. My daughter has been doing shows there since she was a small child. Her first role inspired her to make a professional career out of theatre. It changed her life. This theatre is a tremendous asset to the culture and social fabric of our town.”
“Now that Paradise theatre must find a new home I remember how my husband, Milt Boyd used to say, “you can do theatre anywhere.”
Indeed since knowing Jeff and Vicki Richards I have had a part of theatre in a small chapel, a large church sanctuary, an outdoor amphitheatre, an historical farmhouse, on a parade float and in the present re-modeled community hall.
We did dinner theatre in a small space in the farmhouse in the winter and filled the meadow in the summer. In between Jeff and Vicki held classes, workshops, camps and gave us a haunted house for Halloween.
It is impossible to measure the importance to a community of a viable program of live theatre. Besides the obvious plus of a full season of musicals, comedy and serious drama year after year, Paradise Theatre has provided training in all aspects of performing arts and an opportunity for anyone to find a place in community service. For me personally that service played an important role in my life for many years.
Yes, you can do theatre anywhere. But you have to do it somewhere and that is the challenge now. Jeff and Vicki, the board, the actors and musicians, the technical staff and the audience are ready. Let’s go!”
Betty Boyd, Past Board Member and Property Mistress for Paradise Theatre