Greg Miller reveals his second act
A longtime staple in Rochester's theater community is making a comeback. Greg Miller, who previously spent 27 years at the Rochester Civic Theatre, is taking over the former Whiskey Bones space on North Broadway and converting it into a 200-seat theater. Named for its founder, the Greg Miller Project will offer a variety of seasonal shows, classes and special events.
In a recent interview with Med City Beat, Miller said he hopes to have the doors open by Christmas. Here's more from that conversation.
Q: What initially interested you in theater?
A: When I was a kid, I saw my brother in a play and I thought — I want to do that. I was in first grade at the time, and from that time on I either wanted to be an actor or an artist. I spent all my time doing those things until I wound up in a job in theater.
Q: Can you tell me a little about the project you’re working on?
A: The Greg Miller Project is a new theater venue that we are formulating here in Rochester. We’re doing eight shows a season plus up to 30 separate theatrical events a year. Each show will last about three weeks long. We’ll have food and drink; mostly more substantial appetizers and great desserts.
Q: Besides shows, what other activities are you planning?
A: We want to do improv comedy, stand up comedy, radio theater nights, dance shows, we’d even like to play some cult-classic films! We’d like to do some young people’s theater as well that fits on top of our regular shows. We’ve got a big bag of tricks to choose from, so I’m excited to see what the public wants to watch.
Q: So, you’re teaching some classes right?
A: Yes. We’ll have all sorts of performance classes like singing, dancing, improv, acting. We’ll have classes for all ages from kids all the way up to the ‘young at heart’. We’ll even be able to teach some theatrical arts like stage managing, how to do stage makeup and set design.
Q: I understand that the Rochester Civic Theatre has gone through some major changes in the last few years. How do you feel about the support you’ve received from the community for your project?
A: Spectacular. A lot of people have told me things like ‘You can’t just stop now, you have to keep going. We have to keep going’. I’ve been overwhelmed by people pledging their support, investorships, and really just people waiting for me to say when all this will come to fruition. I keep telling them it’s coming, it’s coming, but I can’t move the stone any faster. The community theater forms is really great and that’s what keeps the Greg Miller Project moving forward. The Greg Miller Project really isn’t just one guy. The Greg Miller Project is a lot of people.
Sid Clarke is a student at Mayo High School, where she is president of the Literature Club. In the past, she has been a columnist for the Post Bulletin and an independent novelist. Sid finds writing inspiration from Shakespeare, Stravinsky and Metallica.