CLAYTON — Thousand Islands Screen and Dramatic Arts Inc., a new group that received its official nonprofit status this month, will host a benefit comedy show on Saturday, June 3, at the Clayton Opera House.

The 7:30 p.m. show will feature “America’s Got Talent” 2019 season semi-finalist comedian Greg Morton. His “Comedy Impressions” clip featuring some of his “America’s Got Talent” skits has over 7 million hits.

“We very excited about bringing one of the best comedians on the national comedy circuit to the Thousands Islands for this special benefit show,” TISDA Director Michael Kinnie said in a news release. “Greg used to perform at the Lake Ontario Playhouse and would consistently receive standing ovations.”

In addition to his stint on “America’s Got Talent,” Mr. Morton’s comedic impressions, observations and high energy comedy has also been featured on “Stellar Stand-Ups,” “Just for Laughs” and Comedy Central’s “Comics Unleashed.” He also recently hosted his own “Dry Bar Comedy Special.”

The June 3rd benefit will also feature comedian Mike Stankiewicz. He has been featured on A&E’s “Comedy on the Road” and on Comedy Central. And like Mr. Morton, Mr. Stankiewicz was also an all-time favorite at the Lake Ontario Playhouse.

Tickets for the show are $21, $26, or $30, depending on the opera house seating area.

Thousand Islands Screen and Dramatic Arts is a newly formed 501C3 created to educate in the screen and dramatic arts in order to promote kindness, empathy and a greater understanding of the world we live in and the people and cultures within it. TISDA offers an after-school program open to 4th and 5th graders where they use improvisation to create ideas, write, shoot, edit and present short films. Mr. Kinnie said that more programming will be coming soon.

TISDA meets weekly after school on Mondays at the Christ Episcopal Church parish center in Clayton. Mr. Kinnie said that the nonprofit started from a discussion at the church between himself, his wife Rebecca Kinnie, the Rev. Lisa Busby and Lori Arnot.

“We were discussing how polarizing the world seems to becoming and that, now more than ever, we need more empathy,” Mr. Kinnie said. “I think theatre and film, more than any other artistic medium, can help spread empathy and create connections and understanding.”

He said that with the Rev. Busby’s help, the group received a grant from the Archdiocese of Central New York.

“We decided first to focus on elementary students because they are so full of life and optimism,” Mr. Kinnie said. “Our goal is to continue to spread empathy and a greater understanding of different people and cultures as we develop more programming in film, improvisation, comedy and drama for older students and adults.”

To find out more about TISDA programming contact Mr. Kinnie at


The Details

WHAT: Comedy show to benefit the new nonprofit, Thousand Islands Screen and Dramatic Arts featuring Greg Morton and Mike Stankiewicz.

WHEN/WHERE: 7:30 p.m. June 3 at Clayton Opera House, 403 Riverside Drive.

COST: Tickets are $21, $26, or $30, depending on seating area. To purchase tickets, call the opera house box office at (315) 686-2200, or go to its website at

OF NOTE: The show is sponsored by Tunes 92.5, Cerow Agency, The Little Book Store, Reinman’s Department Store and Watertown Savings Bank.

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Johnson Newspapers 7.1

Recommended for you

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.