updated 1/31/2011 9:47:24 AM ET 2011-01-31T14:47:24

HOUSTON, Jan. 31, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Act One hosts its first Black History Month Mixer at The Ensemble Theatre, February 17, 2011, 5:30P.M.

The mixer is free, and guests are invited to attend The Ensemble Theatre's performance of Gee's Bend at a discounted rate. Attendees will have an opportunity to network and mingle with the cast while enjoying light refreshments, and live music from Dallas, Texas violinist Richmond Punch.

"I'm excited to see Act One come to fruition," says Act One Chair Carl McGowan. "This mixer will give our steering committee and members an opportunity to introduce ourselves to other young professional organizations and share our love of The Ensemble Theatre."

Act One Black History Month Mixer
Thursday, February 17, 2011
5:30P.M. – 7:00P.M.

The performance of Gee's Bend will begin at 7:30P.M. Tickets are $12 for Act One guests.

For membership details: 713-520-0055 orwww.ensemblehouston.com/actone

The Ensemble Theatre celebrated the launch of Act One, its first young professional group in September 2010. The organization has grown to more than 50 members who share a passion for the arts and enjoy live theatre.

Carl McGowan and Pamela Ulmer, long time subscribers, have been appointed as Chair and Co-Chair to lead Act One through its inaugural year. Other steering committee members include: Tracy Guillory, Angelique Bartholomew, Henry Mosley, and Crystal Washington.

Act One was created as a way to unite The Ensemble Theatre's growing community of young artists and professionals with an increasing interest in how they can contribute to sustaining the institution. Act One members recognized as the theatre's next generation of leaders who will support the theatre's annual membership campaign and eventually develop into volunteer and fundraising support.

The Ensemble Theatre was founded in 1976 by the late George Hawkins to preserve African American artistic expression and to enlighten, entertain, and enrich a diverse community. The theatre is known as the only professional theatre in its region dedicated to the production of works portraying the African American experience. In addition to being the oldest and largest professional African American theatre in the Southwest, it also holds the distinction of being one of the nation's largest African American theatres that owns and operates its facility with an in-house production team. Board President Emeritus Audrey Lawson led the capital campaign for The Ensemble's $4.5 million building renovations that concluded in 1997.

CONTACT: Robert Ross
         (713) 807-4306
         rross@ensemblehouston.com

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