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History

Timeline

1935 - 1960

April 28, 1935 Ground broken for the The Old Globe, an attraction of the California Pacific International Exposition at Balboa Park. Thirty-two day construction period. Seating designed to accommodate 580. Construction cost: $20,000. Designed by Thomas Wood Stevens.
May 29, 1935 The Old Globe opens with repertory of 50-minute versions of Shakespeare Plays.
Feb. 3, 1937 Charter granted by State of California for San Diego Community. Theatre, a not-for-profit corporation that leased Old Globe buildings and land from City of San Diego.
Dec. 2, 1937 First production by new organization opens at The Old Globe, The Distaff Side by John Van Druten, with Craig Noel in the acting company.
Dec. 8, 1941 U.S. Navy acquires Balboa Park for military purposes during World War II; theatre ordered to remove records and equipment within 24 hours.
1942 - 1947 Performances presented of limited productions at Dartlee Hall in San Diego's Hillcrest area and at San Diego-area military installations through the U.S.O.
Jan. 1945 Lowell Davies elected president of The Old Globe.
July 14, 1947 First meeting of theatre members in The Old Globe after federal government returned Balboa Park to City of San Diego; lease agreement was approved by city and theatre.
Oct. 29, 1947 William Saroyan's The Time of Your Life, directed by Craig Noel, opens first post-war season.
June 15, 1949 First San Diego National Shakespeare Festival opens in association with San Diego State University (then known as San Diego State College); Twelfth Night, directed by B. Iden Payne.
Sept. 1949 Caught in the Act, first of six original, topical, musical revues focusing on San Diego people, places and happenings, composed and written by local talent, directed by Craig Noel.
Mar. 1, 1950 World premiere of One Is a Crowd written by Beah Richards, presented in Falstaff Tavern, directed by Craig Noel. Production was forerunner of series that led to development of Cassius Carter Centre Stage.
July 8, 1953 Mr. Roberts opens, replacing Shakespeare Festival for one summer. Capacity audiences during 13 weeks provided substantial financial resources for the first time.
July 1954 Fifth San Diego National Shakespeare Festival is first to be produced independently by The Old Globe.
July 1959 First professional (Actors' Equity) acting company employed to perform San Diego National Shakespeare Festival.