3535 School Street, Lafayette, California 94549, United States
The Lafayette town hall theater is a performance art theater located at 3535 School Street, Lafayette, California.
The Town Hall Theater 's goal is to represent the diverse audiences of Lamorinda and the Bay Area by providing a theater of the highest professional quality that reflects a spirit of thoughtful discovery of human experience. They believe in fostering young theater talents through our arts education programs and bringing together performers, audiences and the community through their fellowships.
It was founded in 1944 as the Dramateurs and reorganized in 1992 as the Town Hall Theater Company of Lafayette. They are the oldest continuously operating theater company in Contra Costa County.
By Stacey Baca - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=12222368
The community has donated the land and the labor to create the new city hall. Construction of land donated by Frank and Rosa Ghiglione was completed in May 1914 and contributed $200 to building costs as well. The first event in the building was a big ball, with subsequent town hall events so attended by the special train from Oakland to West Lafayette from Sacramento Northern Railroad. The festivities always start at 9 pm, with dinner at midnight, and dance and more festivities. One train is said to have departed at 5:30 a.m.
Before the building of an auditorium in 1944, Lafayette Grammar School used the City Hall as an auditorium. Town Hall also organized community meetings, religious services, films and basketball. In 1941, the Lafayette Playshop started to perform in the City Hall. The opening night of the Playshop was 3 December 1941 just prior to the beginning of the United States' Second World War , which led the City Hall to the war over the next four years.
It was rented out in 1947 by Straw Hat Revue and produced there by the Dramateurs in 1955. Between 1956 to 1986 there was a collective party named the "Laf Frantics." As a Town Hall Theater Company in 1992, the dramats have now reorganized and since then, have thrilled audiences of different ages, winning several local Shellie awards.
Live theatre, thanks to the hospitality of its residents, is continuing in Lamorinda, and the life and use for so many decades of the buildings of the town hall bears witness to this mood.