Smiling Peanut, an upstart independent film production company based in Fort Collins, Colorado, announced today their annual sponsorship of OpenStage Theatre & Company‘s 31st anniversary season, “Thrills, Chills and Belly Laughs.” Beginning with the season’s inaugural production of Agatha Christie’s “Murder at the Vicarage,” Smiling Peanut Productions will be annually contributing funds to the further development of OpenStage’s tradition of producing exciting live entertainment in northern Colorado. The 2003-2004 season marks the beginning of the fourth decade in which OpenStage has been producing theatre in Colorado.
Smiling Peanut President Chris Lanphear and Vice President Jake Theisen are both active members of OpenStage Theatre and have contributed to the company both on-stage and off. Their personal relationships with OpenStage began in late 2001 when Chris Lanphear served as Assistant Director of Lanford Wilson’s “The HOT L Baltimore,” directed by OpenStage alum Richard Strahle.
“We are incredibly proud of our personal associations with OpenStage, its directors and vast array of members,” said Chris Lanphear. “It is through this valuable relationship that we have come to know so many diverse, talented people as collaborators, artists, and friends.”
Smiling Peanut is an upstart independent media production company based in Fort Collins, Colorado. Formed by Chris Lanphear and Jake Theisen, the company is actively developing several new projects. Additional information on the company can be found at www.smilingpeanut.com.
Since its inception in 1973, OpenStage has actively produced and promoted live performing arts in Northern Colorado, making it one of the longest-practicing and most renowned theatrical producers in the state. In addition to being the foremost local producer at the Fort Collins Lincoln Center, the city’s primary performance space, OpenStage is a major figure in the statewide arts producing community. Citing productions that consistently garner critical and public acclaim, The Denver Post applauded OpenStage’s work as ranking “among Colorado’s best companies.”
Recipient of the Governor’s Award for Excellence in the Arts, commendation by the Colorado State Legislature and the City of Fort Collins and the CCTC Distinguished Merit Award, OpenStage Theatre is a constituent member of Theatre Communications Group, the national association of professional not-for-profit theatres. Excellence, discipline, and artistic integrity are the principles that continue to guide OpenStage.