THE MISSION OF THE RIDGEFIELD PLAYHOUSE, AS A NON-PROFIT PERFORMING ARTS CENTER, IS TO ENTERTAIN, ENRICH AND EDUCATE OUR COMMUNITY AND SURROUNDING AREAS AND TO INSPIRE PEOPLE OF ALL AGES AND BACKGROUNDS.
In 1994, a group of Ridgefield residents got together and formed Friends of RPAC (Ridgefield Performing Arts Center). After years of persistence by The Friends, the project was finally approved by the town in 1998. A building committee was created. The committee donated hundreds of hours of their time. As a Thank You for their time, plaques were created for all of those who volunteered at the 10-year anniversary of the Playhouse and still hang on the wall in the entryway to this day.
The stage was donated by Patricia Schuster who founded The Ridgefield Civic Ballet (known at The Ridgefield Conservatory of Dance today). Finally, in December of 2000 The Ridgefield Playhouse opened its doors with a performance by Jose Feliciano. The first season consisted of only about 12 performances, with the theatre open only from September through May. Over the years that number has consistently grown to where now The Ridgefield Playhouse presents more than 200 live shows annually, plus movies, hosting more than 100,000 patrons each year
In 2004, Allison Stockel became the executive director, volunteering her time, talent and energy to catapult The Playhouse into the powerhouse it is today. Today, the Playhouse has music, dance, Broadway performers, comedy, speakers and more. It shows hundreds of movies, livestreams classical performances from around the world, and entertains thousands of school children with its Arts in Education program, and donating tens of thousands of dollars-worth of tickets to low-income families with its Arts for Everyone initiative.
We are grateful to the dedicated townspeople who gave this old theatre new life twenty years ago.