Tina Fey, Monica Horan Jump Start Upper Darby Summer Stage Theater Fund

Summer Stage theater students rehearse "The Wizard of Oz".
Image via Heather Khalifa, The Philadelphia Inquirer.
Summer Stage students rehearse "The Wizard of Oz".

The Upper Darby Summer Stage theater program is off to a good start on its fund-raising campaign, to the tune of about $500,000, writes Jane M. VonBergen for The Philadelphia Inquirer.

Helping it happen are Summer Stage alums, comedian Tina Fey; and Monica Horan Rosenthal, from “Everybody Loves Raymond.” They’ve hooked up with the Upper Darby Arts and Education Foundation and the Broughton Foundation to give the fund a healthy start.

Summer Stage can no longer totally depend on funds from Upper Darby Township and Upper Darby School District, which face financial challenges. That’s where the fund-raiser comes in.

Summer Stage started in 1976, an idea of a 20-year-old Harry Dietzler, who saw the possibilities of a youth summer theater program in Upper Darby at a time when there was nothing in the summer locally for children.

Today, at 66, Harry is executive director. These financial gifts “really mean the future,” he said.

“I know what Summer Stage has done for the community. It’s been a place where people can celebrate their children. It’s been a place for the kids to blossom,” he said.

Read more at The Philadelphia Inquirer about a private funding effort for Upper Darby Summer Stage.