Two years ago, Flossi Micciolo said, she thought her Ocean City Repertory Theatre had a "50-50" chance of being shut down by the Ocean City Zoning Board of Adjustment.
Then, last year, the theater was all but destroyed by Hurricane Sandy.
Now, after having a "happy ending" despite all that, Micciolo is opening her theater's season with six one-act plays called "All in the Timing," written by David Ives.
"We're doing the original six (plays in "All in the Timing"), where Ives plays with time and language," said Micciolo, OCRT's founder and producing artistic director.
Micciolo vacationed in Ocean City in January 2001 and fell in love with the city, she said. When she decided to move to the vacation hotspot from New York, she knew that she couldn't live in a town without a theater, and thus "it was the first one that was ever (in Ocean City)."
"It was definitely something the community needed," Micciolo said. "We had great support from the beginning."
Her love of theater has prompted her to endorse an open door policy.
"I never turn anyone away from the community," Micciolo said. "We work with people to make the performing arts available to the community."
OCRT actress Erin Frank, 22, of Hammonton, said that she loves the open door policy.
"I think it's amazing. A lot of the people that come here, they're not the typical Ocean City residents, they're sort of the underdogs," Frank said. "We're all like an immediate family; we all love each other here. There is absolutely no animosity."
The Ives production is almost a reopening for the theater, which was heavily damaged by last year's hurricane. Micciolo said the whole theater had to be gutted and rebuilt with a new stage, lights and costumes.
"October will be when we get all of our programming back on track," Micciolo said.
For the Ives production, Frank is performing in "Words, Words, Words," a skit about three chimpanzees and the theory that if left alone in a room full of typewriters, they would eventually produce Shakespeare's "Hamlet;" and "Sure Thing," a skit about a couple at a cafe with the ability to bend time if they don't like what the other is saying.
Micciolo said she chose the works of Ives because she wanted to find age-appropriate, interesting content for her college-age actors, which is the demographic of actors she has performing in this production.
Jacob Ryan, 18, of Northfield, is performing in three acts: "Variations on the Death of Trotsky," which depicts eight different ways that Russian Marxist Leon Trotsky died; "Words, Words, Words;" and "The Universal Language," about a man who creates his own language and tries to sell it to the world.
The two other Ives plays to be performed are "Philip Glass Buys a Loaf of Bread," about the minimalist composer and his tendency for repetition, and "The Philadelphia," about two men in a bar who get the opposite of anything they ask for.
"I like the selection," Ryan said. "I'm not familiar with it. I like diving into new stuff, and these plays seem funny and fun."
Frank agreed with her co-actor: "We all wanted to do something funny and we all wanted to do an adult contemporary, so it was an immediate yes."
Contact Devin Loring:
If you go
'All in the Timing,' six one-act plays by David Ives
Ocean City Repertory Theatre, 813 Asbury Ave., Ocean City
8 p.m. Oct. 3, 4 and 5, and 3 p.m. Oct. 6
How much :
Call 609-457-6686 or see ocrep.org.