Who We Are

Franklin Performing Arts Company at THE BLACK BOX is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization founded in 1991. As the sole Actors' Equity Small Professional Theater in MetroWest Boston, the company showcases immersive performing arts experiences in downtown Franklin, MA. In the heart of the Boston-Worcester-Providence triangle, audiences delight in high-caliber entertainment featuring Broadway stars, professional performers, regional talent, and student apprentices!

*This theater operates under an SPT agreement with Actors' Equity Association. Through its agreement with equity, this theater has committed to the fair treatment of the actors and stage managers employed in each production. AEA is a member of the AFL-CIO and is affiliated with FIA, an international organization of performing arts unions. For more information, visit actorsequity.org


Franklin Performing Arts Company is committed to the professional development of emerging artists. We support educational arts experiences, quality entertainment, and outstanding performance opportunities for professional artists, amateur performers, and students. Galvanized by the belief that every person should have the opportunity for artistic expression, Franklin Performing Arts Company maintains a performance facility fostering a passion for the arts, disciplined approach to life skills development, and philanthropic spirit for future generations.

Raye Lynn Mercer - Executive/Artistic Director

Raye Lynn Mercer ‚Äčis the founder of Franklin School for the Performing Arts (est. 1985), Executive/Artistic Director of the Franklin Performing Arts Company (est. 1991), and visionary behind THE BLACK BOX performance and event venue (est. 2014). She received a Bachelor of Arts in Music from Middlebury College and attended the Vienna International Music Center in Vienna, Austria. Her teachers included Maria-Regina Seidlhofer of the Academy of Music, Guiseppe deLellis, Diana Fanning, Gabriel Chodos, and Yoriko Takahashi. Raye Lynn (pianist, director, and choreographer) has presented 34 seasons of musicals, plays, concerts, and dance productions with Franklin School for the Performing Arts and Franklin Performing Arts Company. She serves as Administrator of the school, oversees its musical theater program, and directs the international touring ensemble Electric Youth. Résumé credits from her students include Broadway’s Matilda and Wicked, Lincoln Center, national Broadway tours, regional companies, European concert tours, Fox-TV’s American Idol, annual Walt Disney World performances, and placement in top college and conservatory arts programs! Combining profession and hobby, Raye Lynn has directed Symphony of Horses productions nationwide, developed the Electric Youth professional concert tours in Europe, and taught musical theater workshops in Austria and Hong Kong. Proudly bringing Broadway to Franklin, she is thrilled that Franklin Performing Arts Company is a newly recognized Equity Small Professional Theater!

Board of Directors

Thomas D. Mercer - Chairman Roger Breslin - Treasurer | Lori Wirkus - Clerk

William S. Buccella | Tyrick Wiltez Jones | Raye Lynn Mercer | David Porter | William Weiss