Create Account

Find an Event

Do you have an event you'd like to have listed?

    Venue

    Theatre By The Sea

    364 Cards Pond Road
    Matunuck, RI 02879

    Phone: (401) 782-8587   |   Email

    Official Website

    r18.jpg

    Theatre By The Sea is a 500 seat Summer Stock Barn Theatre, located 1/4 mile from the Rhode Island shore.

    Theatre By The Sea has had many incarnations over the years. In the beginning, between 1928 and 1933, Mrs. Alice Jaynes Tyler ran a camp for girls on the property of her summer home. With the Depression quickly limiting the market for summer camps, she decided to instead create jobs by turning the old shingled barn into a theatre....

    Theatre By The Sea is a 500 seat Summer Stock Barn Theatre, located 1/4 mile from the Rhode Island shore.

    Theatre By The Sea has had many incarnations over the years. In the beginning, between 1928 and 1933, Mrs. Alice Jaynes Tyler ran a camp for girls on the property of her summer home. With the Depression quickly limiting the market for summer camps, she decided to instead create jobs by turning the old shingled barn into a theatre. She teamed up with Russian defector and actor Leo Bulgakoff, the cockney producer, Leslie Spiller, and famed lighting designer Abe Feder – and on August 7, 1933 Mrs. Tylers’ 300 seat barn theatre came to life.

    The next five years brought numerous partner change, but they all stayed under the watchful eye of Mrs. Tyler, who continued to run the Inn. On September 2, 1938, a hurricane caused extensive damage; the roof was blown off and the back wall collapsed. That damage, led fortuitously to the first “renovation.” After carefully cutting the theatre in half with a hand saw, the box office was literally pulled forward by a dump truck, and a new section of theatre and a balcony were added!

    By 1941, with the war raging and gas rationing in place, the theatre went dark for a few years, but then sporadically played as a movie house. By 1947, Theatre By The Sea was again in full swing and entered into a long and fruitful stretch that kept theatre alive for many star-filled summers in Matunuck. Having succeeded through many different producers, the hardships of the passing of Mrs. Tyler in 1951, another hurricane in 1954, and a single “dark” summer in 1959, it seemed as though the theatre’s life was at an end, when it went dark once again in 1963.

    In 1967, upon hearing that the theatre was to be destroyed, Tommy Brent, former Press Agent and Producer, saved the theater from demolition by mere hours. Mr. Brent began a brand new tradition and future for the fabled theatre, by completely producing shows on site – sets, costumes, everything. He was able to run the theatre to enormous success for 22 years.

    The multi-faceted entertainment company, FourQuest took over the lease in 1988. Following extensive renovations that fall and winter, FourQuest re-opened the theater in the spring of 1989 and continued producing the highest quality summer theater in Matunuck until the fall of 2003.

    After being closed for almost four years, Bill Hanney, an independent theatrical and musical events presenter, as well as operator of the Entertainment Cinemas chain of movie theatres, purchased Theatre By The Sea on June 26, 2007. Having seen numerous productions over the years, Theatre By The Sea had always held a special place in Mr. Hanney's heart.

    A producing partnership was quickly established with theatre veterans Amiee Turner and Joel Kipper, who successfully mounted a show just six weeks later, re-opening the historic theatre on August 8, 2007! Stephen Sondheim's nine-time Tony Award-winning musical comedy, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum was chosen for the 2007 sneak preview summer event, because it is not only one of America's greatest and best loved musical comedies, but a true celebration of theatre.

    Ms. Turner, a veteran of the Broadway stage, has a background in film, television, and both commercial and non-profit theatre. As Producing Artistic Director for Theatre By The Sea, she combines her eclectic variety of skills in producing, directing, choreography, development and business management.

    Mr. Kipper is a native of Kansas City, Missouri, with a BFA in Musical Theatre Performance from Southwest Missouri State. As Managing Producer for Theatre By The Sea, Mr. Kipper combines his extensive performance experience in professional regional theatres across the country and around the world with his strong background in technical theatre.

    Together they founded Ocean State Theatre Company, Inc. (OSTC), the 501(c)3 designated non-profit producing entity that currently holds the lease on the property. The purpose set forth by Ocean State Theatre Company, Inc. is to preserve the historic continuity of the Rhode Island landmark known as Theatre By The Sea and to pursue avenues of enrichment and education for the benefit of South County and the state of Rhode Island through live theatre."

    On the National Register of Historic Places, Theatre By The Sea has once again been gloriously brought back to life. With an eye to the past and a vision for the future, OSTC continues to meld traditional classic theatre with the newest award-winning favorites.



    Full map and directions


    There is no accessibility service information available at this time.


    Upcoming Events

    Ain't Misbehavin

    May 30 - June 17, 2018

    Event Rating ( votes)

    Mamma Mia!

    June 20 - July 21, 2018

    Event Rating ( votes)

    Joseph and The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat

    July 25 - August 11, 2018

    Event Rating ( votes)

    Chicago

    August 15 - September 9, 2018

    Event Rating ( votes)

    • Directory Links

         

    © City of Providence Department of Art, Culture + Tourism - All Rights Reserved.
    444 Westminster Street, Providence, RI 02903

    Contact Us I Privacy Policy/Terms of Service