Jenny Adams stands in front of the entrance to the Oxford Hills Music and Performing Arts Association on Whitman Street. Sun Journal photo by Jon Bolduc

Editor’s Note: March is Women’s History month. We have been fortunate to have many women throughout history who are remembered for their contributions to their community, state, country and the world. This month we would like to recognize our women who contribute on a daily basis, quietly, in their own way. They may not make the history books, but they certainly deserve to make our pages.

NORWAY — For Jenny Adams, 56, her theater career started in a bar.

During a conversation at a local establishment with Jeff Orwig and Norman Hutchins, producers for Oxford Hills Music and Performing Arts Association’s production of Almost Maine in 2009,  she mentioned her work as graphic designer.

Orwig and Hutchins asked her to make a poster.

Adams got involved with the theater, started attending OHMPA meetings, and made her way from board member to President, starting her third year in March.

According to Adams, OHMPAA started in 1985, and is governed by a 15-member board composed of locals from Norway, South Paris, Oxford, Otisfield, Hebron and Waterford. Currently, the association puts on two full-length productions a year at the Norway Grange on Whitman Street.

“Most of what we do is producing those two full-length shows … most of work is focused on those full productions at the grange,” said Adams.

Adams helps brings those two productions to fruition, and works to keep the theater modernized and up-to-date, while balancing her full-time work as a graphic designer.

Adams said the theater wants to get new seats, and recently updated ticket sales, allowing for online purchases. Some weeks, she said, it seems like OHMPAA takes up most of her time.

“It gets done, but I don’t know how,” she said.

Adams said growing up she had an appreciation for theater.

“My dad dabbled in community theater, when I was really little, I remember seeing him in one show. He stopped doing that when we got older,” she said. And likewise, her own involvement on the stage was short lived, and came mostly from performances at summer camp. 

“My theatrical career began in 1974 and ended in 1977,” said Adams. 

But Adams said she, and the board at OHMPAA, are committed to bringing theater to Oxford Hills.

“To keep producing quality theater is our primary goal,” she said.  “Theater reflects who we are, how we see ourselves, and there’s nothing like a live performance. I see very few movies, because I don’t think it was the same sort of appeal as actors on the stage, telling the story. Even in the silliest farce, you still see a reflection of yourself, or people you know. I just think that’s the appeal of it.”

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