Couple translates passion for faith into theater productions

By | October 27, 2010

Both Jeremy and Sarah have degrees in theater-related studies. Jeremy started Epiphany Studio Productions in 2003 and Sarah came on board in 2007.

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Jeremy and Sarah Stanbary are creating and starring in theatrical productions with religious themes. (Courtesy of Epiphany Studio Productions | For The Compass)

Upcoming performances

Lolek
Nov. 5, 7 p.m., St. Mary Church, Stockbridge. This one-man, two-act play commemorates the life and legacy of Pope John Paul II, taking audiences on an inspiring journey through the most formative years of Karol Wojtyla’s young adulthood growing up in Nazi-occupied Poland during World War II.

The Vitae Monologues
Nov. 6, 7 p.m., and Nov. 7, 2 p.m., St. Joseph Middle School, Appleton
Sarah and Jeremy perform together in this pro-life drama based on true stories of post-abortive women and men and the devastation that abortion brought into their lives but also the healing, forgiveness and hope that’s possible in Christ after abortion.

Alessandro
Nov. 9, 7 p.m., St. Mary Church, Hilbert. Alessandrois a dynamic, one-man drama based on the true story of the heroic martyrdom of the young modern-day teenage saint, Maria Goretti, and the dramatic conversion of her murderer, Alessandro, after Maria appears to him in prison.

All tickets are $15 for adults, $10 for students/seniors/children with a 20 percent discount for multiple show advance ticket purchases. For more information or to order tickets,call Mark or Pat Preissner at (920) 730-5513.

“I had grown up Catholic but my faith was never a really big part of my life,” recalled Jeremy. “I went through a deepening conversion of the heart when I was in college. By the time I graduated I really had a desire to combine my passion and love for my Catholic faith with my passion for and education in theater. I took a leap of faith and started Epiphany Studio Productions to try and evangelize our culture through faith-based Catholic theater but also to raise the bar of professionalism and artistic creativity within Christian-based theater today.”

Currently Epiphany has six shows in its repertoire, all written by Jeremy. “I knew that I was going to have to do my own thing so I researched and wrote my own plays. They are all small one-person or two-person dramas that are easy to travel with. We wanted this to be a traveling theater so we could reach out to as many people as possible.”

The Epiphany team will be in the Fox Cities performing three of their most popular shows Nov. 5 through 9.

“All of our shows are rooted either in a real-life story or some historical event,” noted Jeremy. “We’re trying to inspire people with a message of beauty and truth and transcendence. We want to be a seed for something positive in our culture and renewal of the spiritual life and knowledge of our faith from within the church. Theater is such a great avenue for that because not as many people are open to sitting through a lecture but if you can package the faith in an inspirational and educational format within something that’s entertaining, you’ll have a much more captive audience and hopefully it will reach more people.”

The performances are very gratifying for both Sarah and Jeremy.

“After a performance people come up to us and share how moved they’ve been, how they’ve learned something about their faith or how they’ve been inspired in their own life by our performances,” said Sarah. “That is so rewarding knowing that I’m working in what I love and what I have a passion for and yet I’m helping make a difference.”

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