From theaters housed in buildings that date to the 1600s to performing arts centers dedicated to Shakespeare’s work, Virginia’s historic theaters will transport you back in time. Here are our favorites.
The Attucks Theatre is in the heart of Norfolk’s historic Church Street. Originally known as the “Apollo Theatre of the South,” the Attucks opened in 1919 and has been hosting performances ever since.
The State Theatre in Falls Church, Virginia, originally opened as a popular movie theatre in 1936. In the late 1990s, millions of dollars were poured into renovations, making it one of the best areas for concerts, live shows, and corporate events in the area.
Wolf Trap is an American institution. Established in 1966, Wolf Trap spans over 117-acres in its entirety, with several outdoor theatres scattered throughout. Wolf Trap hosts a wide array of cultural musicians, plays, and many of America’s top talent.
The Swift Creek Mill Theatre is Virginia’s only professional, producing theatre south of Richmond, according to their website. They have a mainstage and youth theatre program, among others. The theatre is situated in a structure originally built in 1663 and has served as a theatre since at least 1965.
Since 1929, the Winchester Little Theatre has “presented, produced, and encouraged the production, acting and writing of plays,” as is their mission. They have a ton of different events geared towards all ages. Kids interested in theatre may want to sign up for their summer program.
Harrisonburg’s Court Square Theatre brings lesser-known festival films that would otherwise not be seen at bigger theatres. This can include film festival darlings, international films, or even locally produced movies.
Attending a production at the American Shakespeare Center’s Blackfriars Playhouse is a delight. Founded in 1988, the Black Friars is a recreation of William Shakespeare’s original theatre in the round. They put on several different classic plays a season.
Opened to the public for the first time in 1947, the Star Theatre still “offers the region an outstanding mix of professional quality dinner theater productions, new and classic films, and concerts by international renowned artists” playing a wide variety of music. They also host a live radio broadcast twice a month.
The Lincoln Theatre in Marion, Virginia, opened to great fanfare in 1929, but eventually fell into disrepair. The community came together in 1999 to revitalize it, bringing it back to its former glory. Today, the Lincoln Theatre is a go-to destination for concerts, movies, and more.
The Barter Theatre of Abingdon, Virginia, opened in 1933. Customers could either buy a ticket for 40 cents or the equivalent amount of product, which was quite popular during the Depression era in which it opened. The theatre still hosts barter days at least once a year, this time donating the food to a local food bank.