Cottage Grove welcomes return of ‘Creative Chaos’

Creative Chaos has returned for its third year at the Opal Center for Arts and Education, putting on display the talents of members of Cottage Grove’s community with disabilities.

Titled “Somewhere in Time,” the two-act play follows the group of actors on an adventure through time, each destination representing a scene written by individual members of the cast.

The seven-actor troupe began workshopping ideas back in June.

“On our first play practice, I said, ‘Anywhere you want to go, pick it,’” said Creative Chaos Director Carmen Dowell.

Each member selected their own concept and had a week to direct the scene through an improvisation and workshopping process.

The creative license afforded to Creative Chaos participants allows each person to set their own limits and work with what they feel is comfortable.

Scenes this year include a diverse range of themes based on concepts such as Vikings, “Willie Wonka,” John Wayne and Broadway.

“I mean, what other play can have a Viking and a dinosaur in one scene?” Dowell said.

Creative Chaos member Elaine Coffman was in the audience for last year’s play and was inspired to join the group this year. Coffman chose to focus on a “happy vacation” theme for her scene.

While she enjoyed the creativity and hard work involved with the play, Coffman said her favorite part was working with Dowell.

“She gave me confidence that I never had,” Coffman said.

Creative Chaos members are scheduled to return this winter for a Christmas-themed play.

“Somewhere in Time” will finish its second with shows at 7 p.m. Sept. 20-21 and 2 p.m. on Sept. 22.

Tickets are $12 per person.

For more information on joining the Creative Chaos team, contact Carmen Dowell by email at [email protected], by phone at 541-285-5475 or go online to


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