Community Building

Portland Stage is committed to making theater that fosters dialogue in Maine. Every season, we feature community-building efforts centered around our Mainstage productions. Connected to our productions, we produce readings, receptions, discussion events and more.

Our work engages, connects and builds understanding. Through the intimate, personal exchanges that happens through live theater and hands-on programs, we help to shape our community and build greater understanding.


Wayside Food Programs New Logo (2)Wayside Food Programs Food Drive for Lost Boy Found in Whole Foods

Portland Stage had a very successful food drive with Wayside Food Programs during the run of Lost Boy Found in Whole Foods. The play Lost Boy has a strong positive message about what can happen when individuals open themselves up to help others in need. One of our goals during the production was to have audience members leave the play thinking about what they can do to make a difference. In order to make a stronger tangible connection between the themes of the play and our patrons, Portland Stage partnered with Wayside Food Programs to offer a food drive in our lobby during the run of the show. We brought in close to 700 pounds of donated food for Wayside to contribute to area food pantries.


Questions? Please contact Samara Yandell at 207.774.1043 x109

Past Community Events

Besteman Event 8.5x11D2 Surrounding our production of Lost Boy Found in Whole Foods by Tammy Ryan, we hosted a reading of Making Refuge: Somali Bantu Refugees in Lewiston, Maine by Catherine Bestmeman. Besteman is an anthropologist and author who has taught at Colby since 1994. The author shared her journey from Somalia to Maine and the surprising reunion in 2006 with her former neighbors from Somalia, with whom she had lost touch during the civil war. The readings featured passages from the perspective of a white resident of Lewiston and the other from the perspective of a new Somali immigrant.



Color of Community Event_8.5x11Continuing to focus on the New Mainer community surrounding Lost Boy Found in Whole Foods, we hosted a presentation of Sacred Stories by Color of Community in the Studio Theater. Color of Community members are college-aged asylum seekers, refugees and immigrants.  The performance included an audience conversation, followed by a light reception. The event provided a space for New Mainers to share their stories and fostered dialogue about the challenges they face when resettling in another country.