Cleveland Play House archives on display now at Kelvin Smith Library

image of archives from Cleveland Play HouseDiscovery, creativeness and achievement defined the purpose of the Cleveland Play House by its 1915 founders. That mission and the memories of America’s oldest regional professional theater company are captured in a display of archives at Kelvin Smith Library.

The Cleveland Play House donated its archives to the library in December 2011. More than 1,000 boxes of letters, manuscripts, research documents, photographs, posters and other artifacts were transported to the library.

Select stories illustrated in this exhibit include:

  • Technical innovation, ranging from stage architecture to makeup design.
  • Partnership with Western Reserve University to legitimize university education of theater professionals.
  • 80 years of the Women’s Committee’s philanthropy and community outreach to “assist in every way possible in any way help was needed.”
  • The Frederic McConnell/Barclay Leathem collaboration that nurtured the non-profit theater community though the National Theater Conference.
  • Responses from generations of theater-goers to the Play House’s artistic choices.
  • More than 80 years of children’s theater programming.

The exhibit is open to the public weekdays, from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., through May 9 in the library’s Hatch Reading Room.

For more information, call 216.368.0189.