Temple Civic Theatre, Inc., a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation, was formed by a group of interested citizens in 1965. An earlier group, called Old Central Players, had become inactive, so a new name was chosen.
The first play produced (October 1966) was You Can't Take It With You. Temple Civic Theatre, operating with its own board of governors and incorporated as a non-profit arts organization in November 1968, worked under the Cultural Activities Center as a member organization. In 1974, because of its growth and success, the group had to "leave home and find a place of its own." Today, the theatre and the Cultural Activities Center operate cooperatively from separate spaces, both built in 1977. The first production in the theatre's current building was My Fair Lady, which opened April 15, 1977.
The building is an 11,000-square-foot facility containing a 228-seat thrust stage auditorium, two large dressing rooms, offices, classrooms, a kitchen, restrooms, a large scene shop, and a costume shop. It was surrounded in 1989 by paved, curbed, lighted parking, with landscaping and improved signage.
In 1992, more renovation work was performed to help bring the building into compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The women's restroom size was doubled, and a new men's restroom was built, both made accessible to handicapped persons. Handicap seating and parking were increased. Wireless listening devices were added for the hearing impaired.
The facility is valued at over $500,000. Payment was made completely from local donations in support of the theatre.
Staff growth has proceeded from entirely volunteer through part-time management to full-time employees with some contracted directing and teaching positions.
The average number of season ticket holders is 1000, with over 250 volunteers working regularly each season. The organization has a 12-member Board of Governors and volunteer committee chairmen. New volunteers are accepted and trained throughout the year. Main-series shows are cast from open auditions with a loosely-held goal of 50% experienced actors and 50% new participants, in an effort to stabilize quality while encouraging growth.
In the first year of the theatre's incorporation, three plays were done. Now, six shows are performed on the main series, with as many as three other shows being produced as extra special productions referred to as "Spotlight Productions."
Selected by a process beginning with a playreading committee chosen from volunteers and regular audience members, the main series is an overview of theatre literature, featuring musicals, classics, and recently-released titles. Special productions are designed for smaller interest groups in shorter run than the more commercial main series. They include original plays, one-man shows, concerts by local musicians, and plays of a more serious or intellectual theme than the general audience member may wish to attend.
Children's activities have always been of prime importance, with the theatre's philosophy on youth participation being the integration of children and young people into the overall program. In its early years, a children's theatre day camp was conducted each summer. Later, a producing group of teenagers was added. Formal classes in creative drama, a traveling play for public schools using adult actors, and a youth production workshop in the summer have been included in past years.
2413 South 13th St.
Temple, TX 76504
Ext. 1 = Box Offfice
Ext. 4 = Tech Director
Fax (254) 778-4980
Contact us at the
above email address.
We will reply during
normal business hours.
Box Office Hours
Tues. through Friday
9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
and one hour before
(Tickets also available
online 24 hours a day)
Thursday at 7 p.m.
Fri. & Sat. at 8 p.m.
Sunday at 2:30 p.m.
The mission of Temple Civic Theatre is to produce theatre of the highest caliber, to enlist regional talent through open auditions, to educate youth and adults in all aspects of theatre, and to provide opportunities for and encourage participation by volunteers, thus enriching the artistic and cultural base of the communities of Central Texas.