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The Historic Savannah Theatre – A “Don’t Miss”

When my husband and I visited Savannah in May 2023, one of my favorite outings was our night at the Historic Savannah Theatre. We watched a musical called The Drowsy Chaperone and thoroughly enjoyed it.

The Drowsy Chaperone

The Drowsy Chaperone is a Canadian musical by Bob Martin and Don McKellar that was first produced in Toronto in 1998. Though it is a 21st-century musical, it was written as a tribute to the light frothy musicals of the 1920’s. Narrated by a middle-aged man who has gone through several rough patches in his life, the musical is really two stories: that of the narrator and that of the musical he is remembering from his past. The whole thing is LOL funny with brief moments of pathos.

 Advertisement photo courtesy of the Historic Savannah Theatre.

I loved everything about The Drowsy Chaperone: the story, the extremely talented cast, the songs and dances, and the beautiful setting of the theatre. Also, it felt so good to be in a theatre after being shut out of our California ones for the last three years (Covid mandates).

Lobby promotion photo courtesy of the Historic Savannah Theatre.

The Old Savannah Theatre

The original Savannah Theatre was built in 1818. Because fires damaged the building many times over the decades, the outside of the present theatre looks nothing like the original one. However, the interior bricks backstage are from the old 1818 building.

The original 1818 Savannah Theatre. Photo courtesy of the Historic Savannah Theatre.

Many notable stars acted in the old theatre in shows ranging from dramas, to comedy, to vaudeville.

Photo of 19th Century stars courtesy of the Historic Savannah Theatre.
Photo of 20th Century stars courtesy of the Historic Savannah Theatre.

The New Savannah Theatre

The new theatre, now called the Historic Savannah Theatre, was remodeled in 1948. It reopened in 1950 as a movie theater, but luckily for us, returned to its stage roots in 1980.

The current Savannah Theatre looks like a single-screen movie theater, but it’s actually a repertory-stage theatre.

The theatre did, however, make a brief sojourn back to the film business with the making of the movie Forest Gump. Read the pictured article below:

Article photo courtesy of the Historic Savannah Theatre.

The current theatre seats 525 people and has a beautiful art-deco style that makes visitors feel like they are stepping back in time. Since 2002, the theatre has been run by husband and wife co-owners, Mathew and Michelle Meese. They also act in its productions year-round. (Listen to their podcast interview here.)

An attractive upstairs alcove in the Historic Savannah Theatre.

For More Info:

The Historic Savannah Theatre is located at 222 Bull Street, Savannah, Georgia.

For more information, please visit their website.

A view from the balcony of the Historic Savannah Theatre.


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