Walnut Street Theatre, America’s Oldest Theatre, celebrated 200 years of great entertainment in 2009. Most noteworthy American actors of the 19th century and many from the 20th centuryhave appeared on stage at the Walnut. Some of the Walnut’s shining stars include: Edwin Forrest, Edwin Booth, the Drews, the Barrymores, George M. Cohan, Will Rogers, The Marx Brothers, Helen Hayes, Henry Fonda, Katharine Hepburn, Marlon Brando, Jessica Tandy, Ethel Waters, Audrey Hepburn, Sidney Poitier, Lauren Bacall, George C. Scott, Jane Fonda, Robert Redford, Julie Harris, Jack Lemon, and William Shatner.
The theatre has been home to many pre-Broadway try-outs of plays that would go on to become American classics, such as A Streetcar Named Desire starring Marlon Brando, A Raisin in the Sun featuring Sydney Poitier, The Diary of Anne Frank featuring Susan Strasberg, Mister Roberts, starring Henry Fonda, and Neil Simon’s first Broadway play, Come Blow Your Horn.
The Walnut began its most recent incarnation as a self-producing, non-profit regional theatre when Bernard Havard took the helm in 1982, founding the Walnut Street Theatre Company with a vision of once again creating theatre in a space that is so steeped in the American theatre’s traditions and history. Today, you can experience the realization of that dream when you attend a live performance. With over 56,000 subscribers annually, Walnut Street Theatre is the most subscribed theatre company in the world. For additional information about Walnut Street Theatre: Visit WalnutStreetTheatre.org.