by Paula Roberts, Membership and Special Event Manager
Flynn membership starts at $45 and is available at any time. For membership information contact firstname.lastname@example.org or 802-652-4507 or visit www.flynncenter.org/support-us/membership.html.
Flynn members Eddie DeMott and Stephen Rainville grew up in very different settings: Eddie in Williamsburg, across the East River from Manhattan, and Stephen on a dairy farm in Franklin, Vermont. But they share a deep affection for rural Vermont—its beauty, its change in seasons, and its political and cultural climate are restorative. Stephen enjoys visual arts, particularly Umberto Boccioni and the landscape painting of William Turner. Other interests include opera, cooking and good food, reading, and trying to improve the world—beginning with Vermont.
“Supporting the Flynn is the right thing to do,” Eddie said. “Supporting the arts improves our lives, and for the cultural opportunities the Flynn affords us and all Vermonters. We like what it represents and appreciate how it enriches life here.” Stephen and Eddie enjoy the high quality of Flynn performances and they like knowing a few people in the audience, in contrast to the anonymity of theaters in larger cities.
Eddie is a public health specialist, and Stephen a well-known Church Street salon owner and stylist, who make their home in Burlington. Stephen has a daughter, Eliza (22) and a son, Eric (20), as well as 11 siblings and parents who divide their time between the Vermont family farmhouse and central Florida. Eddie’s parents now reside in Danville, Vermont. Eddie spent a year at Vermont Culinary Institute, fell in love with the state, and vowed to return one day, which he did in 1999. Stephen stayed in Vermont, and at age 19 made his very first appearance on the Flynn MainStage in a Lyric Theatre production of Oklahoma.
Eddie’s first performing arts experience was a third grade play and his role as a wizard. Stephen’s was in first grade when he and another student performed solos at the Town Hall for various holidays. Stephen is modest but he has continued to entertain audiences in Vermont and beyond with his vocal talents.
When asked about favorite Flynn Center performances, Stephen and Eddie’s answers come spontaneously: Bill T. Jones, Ballet Grand Prix, Joan Rivers, and their favorite recent performance, Bernadette Peters. Stephen prefers Broadway and music while Eddie’s favorites are dance and comedy. They’d like to see Ann Hampton Callaway, comedian Chelsea Handler and the Martha Graham Dance Company come to the Flynn. They love spending time with family, good friends, and their dog and cats.