Celebrating Jim Rouse

“COMING TOGETHER” A new song celebrating James W. Rouse and The Young Columbians 45th anniversary, with introduction by Edward Norton.

Toby Orenstein, owner of Toby’s Dinner Theatre and founder of The Columbia Center for Theatrical Arts, Inc. (CCTA) celebrates James W. Rouse, Creator and Developer of Columbia, Maryland Sunday, June 14th on the 45th anniversary of The Young Columbians inaugural performance of “A Musical Salute to America” at Merriweather Post Pavilion, in 1975.

In 1972, the founder of Columbia, James W. Rouse (Jim), brought Toby Orenstein and her theatrical school to Columbia. In 1975 a group of students from the school were selected to perform a new show entitled, “A Musical Salute to America”. That group was later named, “The Young Columbians” and toured the United States during the bicentennial era. New generations of young theatrical artists, as “Young Columbians” continue to thrive 45 years later, always keeping in mind Jim’s desire to bring people together, to unite society and to live as one.

To commemorate this special occasion, The Young Columbians, past and present, unite virtually to produce a new song entitled “Coming Together” with music and lyrics by Lisa Alonso from the development of a new musical based on the life of Jim Rouse. With an introduction by his grandson, actor Edward Norton, “Coming Together” is inspired by the life and core beliefs of Jim who believed we must come together in vision and purpose, as a community. “What ought to be can be.”

“I had a hunch. The hope was to produce a community among people…a release of creativity among people who felt a sense of support from one another…that it would be a freer society and that there would be the development of a much greater sense of tolerance, more openness, more trust, more freedom, and more creativity…” James W. Rouse

Produced by Carole Graham Lehan and Tom Alonso with special thanks to ColumbiaAchives.org