To encourage and promote Community Theater in Eastern Massachusetts through educational programming, supportive services, and the recognition of excellence.
EMACT was founded in the late summer of 1985 by an emergency gathering of individuals concerned with the cancellation of an annual community theatre festival, which had run uninterrupted since 1954. Evidenced from the initial outpouring of concern, a state organization was seen as a necessary means of assuring the continuation of the nation's oldest festival.
It was also apparent that such an organization would provide a valuable means of communication among individuals and theatre companies by collectively addressing their needs and concerns. Educational programming such as workshops and the establishment of a consulting program were adopted that same autumn; as well as other supportive activities, such as a monthly newsletter to promote member company auditions and productions. It was also made clear that groups wanted individual and company recognition for productions performed in their own theatre spaces and from that an annual achievement event was included in the organization's first season.
The organization worked closely with NETC (then the festival hosting organization), to assure that the festival continued until such time as EMACT could take sole sponsorship. By 1992 the organization was ready to transition sponsorship of the Annual Drama Festival and completed the task in 1993. The festival continued to venue on the campus of Brandeis University until 2003, when it was moved to its new location at Babson College.
In its 20 years, EMACT has worked to improve its communication by employing the internet with its website, providing easier access to all of its programs and services. It has reviewed its programming and in many cases expanding or tailoring, to meet the specific needs of our members. And true to its theatrical nature, it has found opportunity to celebrate its members' achievements, through an annual awards event; culminating in an entertainment filled gala and banquet, and presentations of annual award trophies in some 45 categories of excellence.