Now Appearing On The Playhouse Stage …

Living in Westport, we sometimes get jaded.

We take the beach, Longshore, our schools and our good fortune for granted.

But I’ve never lost my awe of the Westport Country Playhouse.

And once a year — when one of the oldest regional theaters in the country throws its annual open house/block party — I make sure to go.

I love being able to wander the narrow hallways beneath the stage, where 9 decades of head shots honor this remarkable building’s history:

I’m honored to walk through the green room (spiffed up more than a decade ago, thanks to Paul Newman). If those walls could talk!

And I’m awed to stand on the stage — the same one where Henry Fonda, Dorothy and Lillian Gish, James Earl Jones and so many others have appeared.

The block party continues through 7 p.m. tonight. There’s free beer, food trucks, and more.

But be sure not to miss that stage!

8 responses to “Now Appearing On The Playhouse Stage …

  1. Evan Stein

    I love that you go and that you give them all the support in the world and we used to go when I was little BUT would you go every year if you didn’t love next door?

  2. In the summer of 1957 I had a summer job as an electronics technician in Norwalk. My mother said, “see if you can get Wednesday afternoon off from work.” And I did . I had a good boss.
    That day we went to hear Robert Frost at the Country Playhouse. . He was 83 years old, his voice was strong and he had the thick white hair we well know. He recited Birches. I can still hear him saying
    “One could do worse than be a swinger of birches. ”

    Thank you Country Playhouse, Frost, and my mom.

    ADW Staples 1956

  3. Susan Huppi

    Just another jewel in Westport! ! I am grateful that I grew up in Westport and enjoyed the beach…and the Playhouse.

  4. Scott Kuhner

    I love the hall with the pictures of the various actors that had performed at the Westport Country Playhouse. My late father, Russell Kuhner, took many of those pictures of the actors in the fifties sixties and seventies

  5. Sharon Paulsen

    I was a volunteer usher at the Playhouse for one or two seasons, back in my 80’s high school days. Dulce (spelling?) was the house manager at the time. She had a cool “Gina Davis look” going on, IMO, and was a dynamic person.

    Loved it, and got to see some amazing performances.

    Did quite a bit of print work for them as well (in my Quick Copy/Quality Print days).

    I gather that the old wall of pictures, down the narrow-ish velvet adorned staircase towards the rest room area, is gone now after renovations?

    Last time I was there for a show was when Paul Newman, Joanne Woodward, Susan Sarandon, Tim Robbins, and Matthew Broderick did a “reading” on stage. It was early-ish aughts.

    Ron Howard was mingling in the pre show cocktail crowd. (He probably directed this performance, and sorry I can’t recall for sure).

    Ironically, one of Howard’s amazing actors from Cocoon, Hume Cronyn, was seated directly begin me and my hubby in the orchestra back row.

    Cronyn was having some difficulty with getting out of the seating during the intermission, so my husband helped him stand up, and held him for the trip all the way down those famed old stairs, to the rest rooms. (And back up again, of course, LOL).

    A great moment, that evening.

    I never did “tour” the completely renovated space. My loss. Ah, so there it is.

  6. Vivianne Pommier

    What a great memory. My parents went every monday for opening night.
    We had our seats for many many years. Westport has been so fortunate to have these amazing actors and shows in “our front yard”.