This collection contains programs, playbills, fliers, photographs, scrapbooks, newspaper clippings, reviews, and other memorabilia from Main Street Theater productions, along with materials relating to the theater’s educational programs, administrative records, and financial records. The collection is divided into eight series: Productions, Educational Programs, Publicity/Press, Board of Directors and Committees, Development, Finances, Facilities, and Houston Arts Organizations. This collection was processed according to minimal standards in order to expedite the availability of the materials to the public. Many dates were approximated through spot-checking, and many of the original folder titles were used.
Open for research.
Special Collections owns the physical items in our collections, but copyright normally belongs to the creator of the materials or their heirs. The researcher has full responsibility for determining copyright status, obtaining permission to publish from copyright holders, and abiding by current copyright laws when publishing or displaying copies of Special Collections material in print or electronic form. For more information, consult the appropriate librarian. Reproduction decisions will be made by Special Collections staff on a case-by-case basis.
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Main Street Theater was the first of several new theater companies established in Houston in the 1970s, and was founded to meet two needs: to offer Houston theatergoers a more varied and challenging selection of plays and musicals and to provide a venue for training, employment and exposure for the city's professional theater artists.
Founding Artistic Director Rebecca Greene Udden enlisted a collection of theater professionals in a temporary home at Autry House, the Episcopal Diocese's community center on Main Street — hence, the new group's name. The first production under the name Main Street Theater was Noël Coward's Hay Fever in June 1975.
In 1981, Main Street moved to its present home in an abandoned dry-cleaning plant at 2540 Times Boulevard in University Village. In the 92-seat space, with little to separate actor and audience, Main Street Theater developed an intimate style, which is as suited to the grand scale of Shakespeare as it is to a one-person show. The company opened a second space with a 190-seat theater in February 1996. "Main Street Theater at Chelsea Market" houses a stage dedicated to the youth theater program, as well as to large-scale classics and musical theatre.
Donated by Rebecca Udden on December 31, 2010.
Part of the University of Houston Libraries Special Collections Repository