EAST DERRY — After years of moving sets, costumes and props in and out of storage units, and rehearsing anywhere they could find space, Southern New Hampshire's oldest youth theater company is enjoying its new home at the historic Upper Village Hall in East Derry.
Kids Coop Theatre Inc. signed with the East Derry Village Improvement Society to lease the Upper Village Hall to serve as rehearsal space, set design and construction, and storage space.
Kids Coop is currently preparing for its upcoming show, "Bye, Bye Birdie," set for this weekend, May 18 at 7 p.m. and May 19 at 1 and 7 p.m. at the Opera House in Derry.
The youth theater group spent countless hours at the historic hall rehearsing for its spring musical.
Since 1997, Kids Coop Theatre has provided hundreds of children and teenagers from around the region an opportunity to perform in musical theater.
The group hires the area's best youth theater professionals to teach and inspire the children in acting, singing, music and movement. They learn teamwork, leadership, reliability, and build confidence and friendships that last a lifetime.
Kids Coop has staged more than 40 high-quality productions seen by many thousands at the Opera House.
The Upper Village Hall has played a prominent role in Derry's history for more than 135 years, having served as a town hall, a fire station, a library and home to a number of community organizations.
The East Derry Village Improvement Society, founded in 1902, purchased the historic building and grounds from the town in 2009.
The building has undergone much renovation, thanks to a strong network of volunteers and business partners, to offer it back to the community as a viable community center.
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