• 79°

Gibbs Construction & family makes $5K donation following cancellation of ‘Cinderella’

RESERVE — River Parish Community Theatre recently announced a very generous gift in light of the recent cancellation of nearly the entire run of their summer production, Cinderella. Jennifer DeLatte was cast as the Fairy Godmother, reuniting her with director Darryl Clement and multiple former castmates as well as students on stage. When Jennifer updated her company, Gibbs Construction, regarding the unfortunate cancellations, CEO Lauren Gibbs wanted to help the non-profit organization. Gibbs decided to donate $2,500 to RPCT to help mitigate the losses from the situation. Additionally, Gibbs’ father, Larry Gibbs, is matching the donation, bringing the total to $5,000.

RPCT President Sean Roussel said, “I have never met either Ms. Lauren Gibbs, or Mr. Larry Gibbs. Of course, I know their names and their company, and Jennifer has spoken of them frequently. However, you don’t have to know someone personally to understand what is in their heart. The Gibbs’ generosity, while certainly unexpected, is not surprising. Jennifer has often told me how kind and empathetic their family is, and it is reflected in the company values. RPCT is humbled, honored and so very grateful for this act of kindness by Ms. Gibbs and Mr. Gibbs.”

Jennifer said, “I witnessed the blood, sweat and tears of so many volunteers who literally built the gorgeous set pieces from mere photos, sewed these stunning costumes that were truly gasp inducing, and tracked down beautifully authentic props; I knew I was a part of a production that was going to be out of sight. The actors worked incredibly hard to perfect the harmonies and nail the dances to the point of tears. That dedication and commitment to making Cinderella the best show RPCT has ever produced was fully realized on opening night. It’s heartbreaking that only one audience was able to witness this monumental achievement, knowing the efforts of everyone above and the financial impact it would have on the theater. I merely expressed that to my boss and friend, Lauren Gibbs, and she immediately extended her support along with her father, Larry. I’m grateful to both for supporting the arts as much as they do, and for recognizing its importance in our community now more than ever.”

Lauren Gibbs said, “I was devastated to hear of the cancellation of Cinderella. I know how hard everyone worked and the dedication it takes to put on such a special production. I can’t imagine the financial impact this turn of events has on a community theater, but I know for sure that I do not want to live in a world without the arts!”

After a nearly sold-out opening night performance, RPCT announced show cancellations due to health concerns for the cast, crew and community.

RPCT plans to re-group soon to begin work on their Christmas event and start discussions for next summer’s musical. Roussel concluded by saying, “We have often said how blessed we are with a community of businesses and individuals who support what we do. We don’t ever take that for granted. The support we are given is because of the high standards and family approach we bring to community theatre in everything we do. We will continue to honor that support with the very best we can bring.”

Community members who wish to support RPCT can submit donations at the following link: https://www.paypal.com/donate…