OSWEGO, NY – At its meeting Monday night, the Common Council approved use of public space and funds in order to support and sponsor the Bicentennial Canal Theatre Project to be held August 18.
The production will be directed by Steven York, and is an original dramatic play written by Oswego native Rick Sivers.
The project has already received some outside financial support. The city’s share will be $4,000 or less depending on the amount the organizers fund-raise between now and the event.
According to Kevin Caraccioli, city attorney, the H. Lee White Maritime Museum is going to be a fiduciary agent for any monies that are received (from donations).
The venue for the performance will be the Derrick Boat 8 that’s docked at the museum. The vessel was used in the maintenance and operation of the NYS Barge Canal.
At the public session, Sivers thanked the council for considering the production and urged its support.
Hopefully, he said, the play will move on to the statewide scene “and involve people in other (canal) communities in telling their stories.”
“I think there’s great potential for the project,” he told the council.
Shifting his focus slightly, The Oswego Players will show the film, “Oswego Discovers Itself” at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, the group’s president said.
It will be presented in the Frances Marion Brown Theater at the Oswego Civic Arts Center.
“If you want to see what arts and culture were like in Oswego 50 years, come and see this film,” he said.
“Oswego Discovers Itself” was produced by a group from Columbia University in New York City in 1965.
The public is invited to view the movie free of charge.
Fifth Ward Councilor John Gosek who has spearheaded the canal production said that while the Port City is revitalizing its downtown and waterfront it should also energize the arts as well.
“Hopefully, it will be a success,” he said. “I really think that it’s going to take on a life of its own.”
With the NYS Canal System recently being designated as a National Historic Landmark and the Oswego Canal being counted as part of this historic transportation system, the city of Oswego is a natural setting for a production of this play, he added.