Maryland State Theater - Center Stage

[photo, Center Stage, 700 North Calvert St., Baltimore, Maryland] Baltimore Center Stage
700 North Calvert St., Baltimore, MD 21202
(410) 986-4000; (410) 332-0033 (box office)

In 1978, Center Stage was named the State Theater of Maryland (Chapter 1003, Acts of 1978; Code General Provisions Article, sec. 7-319(a)). The Theater was renamed Baltimore Center Stage in 2017.

Baltimore Center Stage is a nonprofit resident professional theater. (Resident theaters invite artists to perform or design costumes and sets for their productions while living in theater-provided housing for the duration of their performance schedules.) One of approximately 70 resident theaters nationwide, Baltimore Center Stage has an annual operating budget of about $6.7 million and employs some 100 artists and administrators year-round.

Center Stage, 700 North Calvert St., Baltimore, Maryland, 2004. Photo courtesy of Center Stage.

[photo, Center Stage, 700 North Calvert St., Baltimore, Maryland] A season of classics, music theater, new works, play readings, and cabaret series is offered by Baltimore Center Stage. More than 100,000 people per year attend. Productions are performed on one of three stages (the 541-seat Pearlstone Theater, a smaller 400-seat Head Theater, and the new 99-Seat Theater) whose sets and props are made in Baltimore Center Stage's own shops.

Performances include plays, as well as play labs (staged readings of emerging plays); digital initiatives; and special engagements. For plays and events offered for the 2022-2023 season, see:

Center Stage, 700 North Calvert St., Baltimore, Maryland. Photo by Richard Anderson, courtesy of Center Stage.

In the City's downtown, Baltimore Center Stage was founded in 1963. Performances originally were held at a Preston Street fraternal hall. In 1965, Center Stage became a nonprofit regional theater and moved in the 1970s to a former Oriole cafeteria at 11 East North Avenue. A devastating fire in 1974 destroyed the premises. From the destruction, Center Stage rebounded by acquiring and partially renovating an old building (once part of Loyola High School & College) on Calvert Street. There, at its present location, the theater reopened its regular season in 1975.

Baltimore Center Stage underwent a massive $28 million renovation in 2016. The grand reopening was March 3, 2017.

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