La Jolla Playhouse

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La Jolla Playhouse
Formation 1947
Type Theatre group
Purpose Contemporary Theatre
  • San Diego, California
Artistic director(s)
Christopher Ashley
Notable members
Founders: Gregory Peck, Dorothy McGuire, Mel Ferrer

La Jolla Playhouse is a not-for-profit, professional theatre-in-residence on the campus of the University of California, San Diego.


La Jolla Playhouse was founded in 1947 by Gregory Peck, Dorothy McGuire, and Mel Ferrer.[1] In 1983, it was revived under the leadership of Des McAnuff. Prior to 1983, Eric Christmas created "The Man Who Came to Dinner" in temporary space at La Jolla High School, and the production starred Larry Seaman in the lead role, and Robert Zimmerman, who later worked with Des McAnuff [La Jolla Light, Nov. 12, 1981]. Since then, the Playhouse's repertoire has included forty-four world premieres, twenty-four West Coast premieres, and seven American premieres, and has won more than three hundred honors, including the 1993 Tony Award as America's Outstanding Regional Theatre. It is supported, in part, by grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the California Arts Council, the City of San Diego, and the County of San Diego. It was announced on April 10, 2007 that Christopher Ashley would succeed McAnuff as Artistic Director.

La Jolla Playhouse provides a number of educational opportunities for children, teens, and adults interested in theatre arts, both as performers and behind-the-scenes. In addition, the Performance Outreach Program brings professional productions to schools, libraries, and community centers throughout San Diego.

Among the productions that originated at the Playhouse before finding success on Broadway are The Who's Tommy, Matthew Broderick's revival of How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, Jane Eyre, Dracula, the Musical, Thoroughly Modern Millie, Cry Baby, Bonnie and Clyde, 700 Sundays, Jersey Boys, Memphis, Peter and the Starcatcher, Chaplin and "Hands on a Hardbody".

La Jolla Playhouse also has many opportunities for children and young adults interested in theatre. High-schoolers can be part of its Education and Outreach program by becoming part of the La Jolla Playhouse Student Board of Trustees. There are additional opportunities through the La Jolla Playhouse Summer Conservatory, Young Performers' Workshop (YPW) and the other YP@LJP summer camps, POP Tour, Residency Programs and many other educational workshops and classes.

Page To Stage

La Jolla Playhouse began the Page To Stage program in 2001 to facilitate the development of new plays and musicals, offering audiences the rare opportunity to experience the "birth" of a play and take part in its evolution. As a Page To Stage workshop, a production will feature minimal sets and costumes, and will be revised throughout its entire process, including performances. After the performance, audience feedback sessions will provide insight and suggestion for both the creative team and the actors.


In the five years since the program began, two Page To Stage Productions have gone on to win Tony Awards. Doug Wright's I Am My Own Wife won the 2004 Pulitzer Prize for Drama and Tony Awards for Best Play and Best Leading Actor in a Play (Jefferson Mays); and Billy Crystal’s 700 Sundays, a 2004 Page To Stage Production, won the 2005 Tony Award for Special Theatrical Event.[2]


Managing Directors

  • 1981-1991: Alan Levey
  • 1992-2004: Terry Dwyer
  • 2005-2008: Steven Libman
  • 2009-  : Michael S. Rosenberg


Artistic Directors


La Jolla Playhouse has been home to many up-and-coming performers as well as established actors.

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2007–2008 season

2008–2009 season

2009–2010 season

2010–2011 season

2011–2012 season

2012–2013 season

2013-2014 season

2014-2015 season

2015-2016 season


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External links

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