The 10 Best Live Theater Venues in Connecticut!

Connecticut has an impressive number of independent theaters that work to promote the arts in their communities. With an exciting theater scene in Connecticut, there’s a long list of places to catch top-notch performances. Support the arts by stopping in to these 10 great theaters in the state! 

1. Flock Theatre at Connecticut College, New London, CT

Located at Connecticut College, Flock Theatre holds numerous (often sold out) performances that typically have timely innuendoes. This non-profit theater company works with the New London community through collaborative performances and fun workshops. Events are announced frequently on their Facebook page, so make sure to keep up with it! 

2. Garde Arts Center, New London, CT

Another excellent non-profit theater in New London is the Garde Arts Center. This local institution is known and loved by all. It shows musicals, orchestra, plays, comedies, and more. Spring and summer is their busiest time of year, so their events calendar is currently filled up with numerous options for adults and kids alike. They also frequently partner with the local community for workshops and collaborations.

3. Chestnut Street Playhouse, Norwich, CT

This intimate playhouse shows high quality performances with a small, energetic cast. Because the playhouse is quite small, every seat in the house provides and excellent view and allows viewers to feel as though they are part of the performance. 

4. Long Wharf Theatre, New Haven, CT

Long Wharf Theatre is an award-winning spot that attracts Broadway, Off-Broadway, and celebrity performances. Pulitzer Prize-winning shows such as “Wit,” “The Shadow Box,” and “The Gin Game” were all performed at Long Wharf. They also have educational programs for children with the aim of integrating the arts with literacy, communication skills, and more.

5. Yale Repertory Theatre, New Haven, CT

Yale Repertory Theatre has been bringing in large crowds since 1966 with an always- outstanding events schedule. In its long history, the Yale Rep has seen an impressive 12 productions head to Broadway. Of its more than 90 world premieres, four of the Rep’s productions have won Pulitzer Prizes and 10 have received Tony Awards after their Broadway transfer. 

6. Ivoryton Playhouse, Ivoryton, CT

The Ivoryton Playhouse was the first self-supported summer playhouse in the U.S. It saw its hay-day in the 1930s and 40s until World War II and following World War II. The Ivoryton Playhouse has featured numerous icons such as Groucho Marx, Gloria Vanderbilt, Ethel Waters, Norma Terris, and Katharine Hepburn. More recently, the Ivoryton Playhouse has been renovated and has returned to its former glory. 

7. Goodspeed Opera House, East Haddam, CT

Goodspeed Opera House is well known as the original home of “Man of La Mancha,” “Shenandoah,” and “Annie.” Opened in 1963, Goodspeed Opera House has certainly featured some shows to remember. 

8. Jorgensen at the University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT

The Jorgensen Center for Performing Arts is a public theater located on the UCONN campus. They show a wide variety of live performances including music, ballet, theater, and comedy. Their packed calendar has shows year-round, making this an excellent option to enjoy performances when the summer theaters are closed for the season. 

9. The Bushnell, Hartford, CT

Located in a landmark building, The Bushnell is one of Connecticut’s most iconic playhouses. With musicals, movies, comedy, ballet, and theater, there is really something on the events calendar for everyone here. Some of the biggest names in the arts have graced the Bushnell stage, including the likes of Marlon Brando and Judy Garland. 

10. Norma Terris Theatre, Chester, CT

Part of the Goodspeed Opera House, the Norma Terris Theatre has a different schedule than what can be found at the Goodspeed. The aim of the Norma Terris Theatre is to encourage and present new American musicals.

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