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New theater aims to bring diversity and faith to Port Huron

New theater aims to bring diversity and faith to Port Huron
New theater aims to bring diversity and faith to Port Huron 01:38

PORT HURON, Mich. (CBS DETROIT) - Bringing diversity and faith to the Thumb, a new performing arts training center is introduced to the community of Port Huron. 

"What I want to offer to people is something that shows a little more diversity and equity," says New Beginnings Theater owner Debra McNair.

Since 1987, McNair has been performing in Port Huron. After traveling for performances around New York, California, and other parts of Michigan, she's back in her old stomping grounds.

"My vision is huge," McNair says about the theater that is home inside the Citadel at 609 Huron Ave.

Based around faith and inclusion and after decades of experience, McNair is ready to bring it to Port Huron. She believes there is a need for something like this in the area.

"Being an African American woman, I don't think that there's a lot, when I do my research, realizing that there's a need for a person like me to be able to help come into this area and bring the community, bring their cultures." McNair says.

"For me, this place is an outlet," says actress Kristal Lee, who plans on participating in the classes when they begin in April. She says there's never enough outlets to be expressive for those who may be struggling with mental health problems.

"I think one of the things that's causing so much disturbance in the area of mental health is the fact that people don't understand what outlets are there," says Lee.

Being an outlet for Lee is the reason she's joining. It's one of the many reasons McNair is looking forward to getting the classes started.

"We need to give people hope. In their life and in their future. Because we see so many things happening today, suicides, all kinds of things going on I want to give people something to hold onto," McNair says.

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