John Gamble is the new technical director for theater productions at the CNY Arts Center, 357 State St., Fulton.
As technical director, Gamble will oversee set building, painting and prop design for productions in rehearsal, including Searching for Eden: The Diaries of Adam and Eve, and Willy Wonka, Jr.
Other productions are planned throughout the year.
“We are thrilled to add John to our artistic staff,” said Nancy Fox, executive director. “This is a hugely important role in theatre and demands close attention to safe and cost effective construction techniques.
“John not only has training and experience in set and prop construction, he also has a deep passion for the challenge of finding creative solutions,” Fox said. “A tree made of cardboard and burlap comes to life in John’s hands, a hefty looking rock is actually soft and spongy when applying techniques for building safe but realistic looking everyday items.”
Gamble, a graduate of SUNY Oswego’s theater department, quickly moved into professional theatre after graduation. He has theater credits with New York Stage and Film in Poughkeepsie, Mac-Hayden Theater in Chatham and in Dubai helping set a world record for the largest fireworks display for Grucci Family Fireworks.
After returning to Oswego to be near family, John was recommended to CNY Arts Center through a mutual acquaintance.
“We found his skills and dedication to his craft to be a great asset and a perfect fit for our needs,” Fox said. “He immediately took on both productions scheduled back to back and has EDEN almost performance ready with the show opening Feb. 14.
“He will jump right in to Willy Wonka Jr. and lead teams of parent volunteers in a huge set build involving painted backdrops, waterfalls, factory machinery with moving parts, and all the demands of the familiar story,” Fox said.
“For his part, John has expressed excitement for the prospects of a professional theater in Oswego County where he can work and continue to live close to family,” Fox said.
“It is the desire of many artists who must choose between sacrificing artistic pursuits in favor of employment to stay in the area near family or move away and sacrifice family connections to pursue employment and artistic outlets in more urban areas,” Fox said.