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Panas Players Celebrate 30th Anniversary at PAC

CORTLANDT, N.Y. - Panas Players had a humble beginning, performing in a drafty, windowless room, known as a cafetorium.

The group of young actors and actresses from Walter Panas High School later performed at Van Cortlandtville Elementary School (when it was Lakeland Middle School) and Lakeland High School before getting their own venue at the PAC at Panas.

It's been a storied history the last 30 years for the Panas Players at the PAC, and director James Filippelli, a teacher and former middle school principal, has been along for the ride throughout.

"I am pleased to report that many students have studied theater in college and beyond, many have written plays or comedy sketches, even opened up their own acting schools, dance schools or voice studios," Filippelli said.

To mark its 30-year anniversary at the PAC, the Panas Players are performing 'My Fair Lady' Friday and Saturday evening at 8 p.m. 'My Fair Lady' was selected as the show in 1980 and 2001 for other milestones as well.

"This classical musical has always had a wide audience appeal," Filippelli said.

Filippelli credited Debra Sautner and James Quaranto with assisting him throughout the years in many capacities, along with Kathy Beaver and Karen Longwell at the middle school.

Tickets for 'My Fair Lady' are $10 and can be reserved by calling (914) 739-2823, ext. 555. Reservations are strongly recommended. Panas Players alumni have been invited to participate in the finale ultimo each night. There will be a complimentary dessert reception both nights at 6:45 p.m. to celebrate the PAC's anniversary.

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