California Community Theatre: A Timeline

1905

PacRep Theatre: the Carmel Club of Arts & Crafts opened the town's first theatre & cultural center, the Carmel Arts & Crafts Clubhouse.

1928

The Alcazar (Plaza Playhouse Theater’s original name) opened on April 27, 1928.

1929

Long Beach Playhouse was founded in Long Beach.

1937

Lamplighters Community Theatre: Founded as The La Mesa Little Theatre










1941

Ramona Hillside Players was founded in Hemet.

Town Hall Theatre Company was founded in 1944 in Lafayette, CA





1946

Morgan-Wixson was founded (under the name Santa Monica Theatre Guild). The Guild has been located at its present site on Pico Blvd. since 1966.


















1946

Coronado Playhouse was first organized as the Coronado Players.

1948

Chanticleers Theatre was founded in Castro Valley.










1950

Fall 1950. Frank Jones, librarian, and Clyde Nielsen, banker, led theatre enthusiasts in an enterprise they called Stockton Civic Theatre.








1953

The Cabrillo Playhouse: The San Clemente Community Theatre was chartered as a non-profit corporation. The Cabrillo Playhouse opened in 1966.

1957

Visalia Players was founded. They have been various places, but since 1976 has its home at the Ice House Theatre in Visalia.

1958

The Conejo Players was born with a "Let's start a theatre" attitude, a meager treasury, & a handful of volunteers to build a stage in a barn & put on shows.

1959

Pacifica Spindrift Players formed in Pacifica, California.











1959

The Santa Maria Civic Theatre was founded as the first organization in Santa Maria to provide continuous live theatre performances.

1961

Westminster Community Playhouse: 1961: theatre founded; 1974: theatre constructed; first show: May 31, 1974; Westminster, CA

1962

Huntington Beach Playhouse was founded.

1964

The Hi-Desert Cultural Center’s was officially organized in 1964, and quickly developed into the largest arts organization in the region.

Performing Arts Company of Laguna Woods/ Theatre Guild Division was formed in 1966 in Laguna Woods, CA















1967

Golden Chain Theatre was founded in Oakhurst.

1968

Tehachapi Community Theatre was founded.

1969

South Valley Civic Theatre was founded in Gilroy California (originally called Gilroy Community Theater).

1972

Lyric Theatre: Founded in San Jose, CA

1972

Ferndale Repertory Theatre was founded.

1976

Chautauqua Playhouse was founded in Carmichael.

1976

Mendocino Theatre Company: The historic black-box stage has been the site of over 200 productions since the company’s founding.

1976

Pewter Plough Playhouse : Cambria's unique, intimate Jewel Box of Community Theatres, presenting entertaining live stage plays & other events year-round.

1977

Willits Community Theatre: from humble beginnings, WCT has developed into a well-established organization, presenting live theater throughout the year.

1977

Gloriana Musical Theatre: originally known as The Gloriana Opera Company, was founded, with Gilbert & Sullivan’s The Mikado as its first offering at Crown Hall.