Behind the Scenes of the California Community Theatre Museum
The process of gathering historical information on California community theatres (based on members of this site) is not boring in the slightest, but it is very time-consuming, mostly because it's interesting! I've learned that there might not be cohesive threads between all the theatres and the rest of California history, or between a theatre and its local history (no, the oil wells in Long Beach did not necessarily inspire oil workers to create the Long Beach Playhouse! No, not every community theatre started from a movie mogul who believed in community theatre outside LA - though a few did!). But, that's part of the beauty of the research, and of our State: discovering that while we have much to brag about culturally, economically, and historically, we are, of course, at the root of it all, people who want(ed) to get together and perform, build, and play. And, all throughout California, whether inspiration came from a military base offering the facilities in which a troupe could perform, or from the need to entertain Gold Rushers who were out here pursuing their own dreams, the beginnings are all built with a love for community theatre.