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History of LCT

  • 1930s - 1940s
  • 1950s - 19 70s
  • 1980s
  • 1990s
  • 2000s
  • 2010s
  1939 - 1949 Seasons
Theatre founded with help from American Association of University Women & Junior League. Purpose: to present educational entertainment for children & to provide the opportunity for creative expression.

First production in March: Noah's Flood

First full season of plays by & for young people.

First all-adult cast: Little Women, with members of the Junior League.

First mixed cast of adults & children: The Wizard of Oz.

First theatre workshops for young people taught by volunteers. LCT presents first production by professional touring company.

  1939 1940 1940-41 
  Noah’s Flood The Snow Queen
The Willow Tree
The Golden Touch
Seven Little Rebels
Little Women
(directed by Lucille Little)

  1941-42 1945-1946 1948-1949
  Teen Town

The Wizard of Oz


Cinderella of Loreland
Johnnie Angel’s Christmas Gift 
(directed by Lucille Little)
Chanticleer (O)
The Princess and the Swineherd
  1957 - 1978 Seasons
LCT joins Dept. of Parks & Recreation in offering productions & classes for young people. First 8-week session of theatre classes offered.

LCT celebrates 25th anniversary with Silver Jubilee revival of past productions & playwriting contest.

First season in which teenagers help backstage. First theatre scholarships awarded.

LCT cooperates with Junior League to establish a "Youth Arts Center," which becomes Living Arts & Science Center in 1969.

First full-time director hired. LCT begins developing full program of classes & professional adult touring company.

First touring production visits 18 sites in Eastern Kentucky. Special school performances added to season.

1976-77 - Production program moves into Opera House.

  1957  1971-72 1973-74
  The Land of the Dragon The Wizard of Oz
A Christmas Carol
Peter Pan
Livin' de Life
Jack and the Beanstalk
Free To Be You and Me (T)
  1974-75  1975-76  1978 
  The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
Everybody, Everybody
Rags to Riches
An Invisible Dragon (T)
A Broadway Musical Revue


  1980- 1989 Seasons
Larry Snipes hired as Producing Director. Year round staff is one and a half employees. ImpACT (Improvisational Acting Company for Teens) formed to give advanced training to highly motivated young people. LCT begins producing professional Opera House shows for school audiences.

Local season expanded to 5 productions. Weekday school performances of 2 productions. Education program expanded to include 2 semesters of Theatre School classes, Summer Youtheatre & summer classes. First full-time Business Manager hired. ReACT (Resident Ensemble Acting Company for Teens) implemented.

Part-time Resident Company of professional 5 adult actor/teachers produce 5-show season. 3 productions available for school performances. Participation in Very Special Arts Kentucky spawns ACTcessible program for disabled teenagers.

LCT joins Fund for the Arts. Professional Resident Company expanded to full-time staff of 6. Local & touring productions reach over 38,000 young people. LCT named "official Children's Theatre of the Commonwealth" by Kentucky Legislature.

Season expanded to 6 shows. Additional studio space leased to increase Theatre School offerings. 1987-88 - Staff increased to include a part time Marketing Director and full time summer education staff. Kentucky Scrapbook showcased at the Southeastern Theatre Conference in Louisville.

LCT shared in the creation of a scenery construction site in an old store front in downtown Lexington increasing the efficiency of production values.

    1979-80 1980-81 1981-82
    Aladdin and His (the) Wonderful Lamp
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland
It’s About Time (This book is about time) (T)
Ronlin Foreman Mime (P)
The Ransom of Red Chief
Beans (P)
A Christmas Carol
Noah and the Great Auk
The Masque of Beauty and the Beast
Feats (P)
Sleeping Beauty
The Arkansaw Bear
Winnie the Pooh (T)
    1982-1983 1983-84 1984-85
    A Pocket Full of Puppets (O,T)
Hans Brinker and the Silver Skates
The Brave Little Tailor (R)
The Legend of Sleepy Hollow
The Tempest
A Play On Words (O,T)
Androcles and the Lion (ACT show)
Step On a Crack
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer
Nightingale (T)
Ozma of Oz
The Boy Who Talked to Whales (R)
The Glass Christmas Tree
Tribe (ACT show)
A Play On Words (T)
A Pocket Full of Puppets (T)
    1985-86 1986-87 1987-88 
    Fool of the World (T)
Northern Lights (O,T)
The Miracle Worker
The Tales of Beatrix Potter (T)
Wiley and the Hairy Man
Winnie the Pooh (P)
The Phantom Tollbooth
Huckleberry Finn (T)
The Adventures of a Bear Called Paddington
The Bunny Tales of Beatrix Potter (O,T)
The Gift of the Magi / A Cop and the Anthem
The Tales of Hans Christian Andersen (O,T)
The Tingalary Bird
A Kentucky Scrapbook (O,T)
Charlotte’s Web (P)
Mother Hicks
Signy’s Saga (O)
The Emperor’s New Clothes
The Ransom of Red Chief (T)
The Bunny Tales of Beatrix Potter (T)
The Fool of the World (T)
The Tales of Hans Christain Andersen (T)
    A Christmas Carol
Flowers for Algernon
Peter and the Wolf and Other Tales From Eastern Europe (O,T)
The Arkansas Bear
The Velveteen Rabbit
A Kentucky Scrapbook (T)
The Ransom of Red Chief (T)
The Tales of Hans Christian Andersen (T)


  1990-1999 Seasons

Initiated regional performances of Main Stage productions in performing arts venues outside Lexington. Jack and the Wonder Beans showcased at the Southeastern Theatre Conference in Alexandria, Virginia.

Expanded education program to include performance workshops in two area elementary schools.

Initiated a professional internship program by adding a full time education intern. Kick-off of the Campaign for the Future capital fund drive.

Season expanded to include two Discovery Series productions bringing the season offering to eight shows. Received one million dollar challenge grant from theatre founder Lucille C. Little.

Ground broken for new facility. Added Summer Musical for LCT alumnus and current students.

LCT celebrates its 60th anniversary by moving into its first permanent home. Expanded professional internship program to include acting, education, production and arts administration positions.

  1989-90  1990-91  1991-92
  A Christmas Carol (T)
Macbeth (O,T)
Mean to Be Free
Rumplestiltskin (O)
The Pied Piper
The Town Mouse and the Country Mouse (T)
Peter and the Wolf (T)
Pinocchio (O)
Rapunzel (R)
Sir Gawain and the Green Knight
The Tales of Edgar Allen Poe (T)
Uncle Wiggly (O,T)
A Christmas Carol (O,T)
The Princess and the Pea (R)
The Little Match Girl
Twain by the Tale (T)
Jack and the Wonder Beans (O,T)
The Wind in the Willows (R)
A Christmas Carol (T)
  1992-93  1993-94 1994-95
  Nightingale (T)
Romeo and Juliet (O,T)
Frankenstein (R)
The Adventures of Madeline
Androcles and the Lion (R)
A Christmas Carol (T)
The Jungle Book (T)
Most Valuable Player (T)
The Legend of Sleepy Hollow (R)
The Best Christmas Pageant Ever
A Christmas Carol (T)
The Reluctant Dragon
Alice in Wonderland
Ramona Quimby
And the Tide Shall Cover the Earth
Treasure Island
Wiley and the Hairy Man (T)
A Christmas Carol (T)
Huck Finn (T)
  1995-96 1996-97 1997-98
  The Tales of Beatrix Potter (T)
A Christmas Carol (R)
Charlotte’s Web
Bridge to Terabithia
The Secret History of the Future (D)
The Red Badge of Courage (T)
Tuck Everlasting
The Velveteen Rabbi
Anne Frank and Me
Code Breaker (D)
The Hardy Boys and the Mystery of the Haunted House
Sea Girl (R)
The Secret Garden (R)
Winnie the Pooh (R)
Noodle Doodle Box (T)
Rootabaga Stories (T)
Really Rosie (D)
The Three Musketeers (O Max Bush)
The Best Christmas Pageant Ever (R)
Shakespeare and Macbeth (O,T)
The Yellow Boat
Hansel and Gretel (R)
Jack and the Wonder Beans (O,T)
The Night of the Pterodactyls (D)

Oklahoma (M)
Riddling Child (D, O John Urquhart)
Wiley and the Hairy Man
A Little House Christmas (R)
Most Valuable Player (R)
Amazing Bone
Afternoon of the Elves
A Thousand Cranes (T)
The Fisherman and His Wife (O,T)





LCT completes Building for the Future Campaign and establishes an endowment. Summer education program expanded to include full day camps.

LCT awarded the Southeastern Theatre Conference's Sara Spencer Award for outstanding contribution to the field of Children's Theatre.

Summer Musical becomes Summer Family Musical - opens auditions to adults and students in the community.

LCT is invited to participate in the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts new play development process New Visions/New Voices. LCT commissioned playwright John Urquhart to adapt Karen Hesse's book witness for the stage. Why Mosquitoes Buzz an original script by Jeremy Kisling, directed by Vivian Snipes, is showcased at the South Eastern Theatre Conference in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

Larry and Vivian Snipes work with local author illustrator Paul Brett Johnson to develop a play based on his books The Cow who Wouldn't Come Down, The Pig Who Ran a Red Light and The Goose Who Went Off in a Huff resulting in the world premiere production of Cows Don't Fly and other known facts.

LCT receives national recognition for its programming through support from the National Endowment for the Arts which funded the regional tour of Senora Tortuga throughout Kentucky, Ohio and South Carolina.

Through a generous grant from the W. Paul & Lucille C. Little Foundation, LCT hires full-time staff for its Rowan & Elliott County Programming with outreach including performances, in-school residencies and Saturday classes for residents for free. Larry and Vivian Snipes work with local author illustrator Paul Brett Johnson to develop a play loosely adapted from his book Old Dry Frye.

With a season of 11 productions, LCT becomes a $1,000,000 company reaching record audiences in school, public, tour and regional performances. Appalachian State University showcases LCT's script Cows Don't Fly and other known facts at the South Eastern Theatre Conference.

LCT celebrates 70 years of theatre for youth, and our 10th year in 418 West Short Street, with a season of firsts including titles from our 1st full season and 3 world premieres! 

  1999-2000 2000-01 2001 - 02
  Once Upon a Mattress (M)
Pecos Bill & Slue-Foot Sue (O,T)
And Then They Came For Me:            Remembering the World of Anne Frank
The Adventures of Madeline (D)
A Christmas Carol (R)
The Sorcerer’s Apprentice
A Kentucky Scrapbook
The Tales of Beatrix Potter (T)
The Ugly Duckling (D)
Into the Woods (M)
Katerina the Clever: A Russian Folk Tale (O, T) Bunnicula (R)
A Christmas Carol (R)
Charlotte’s Web (D)
The Legend of John Henry (O, T)
Sport (P)
Romeo & Juliet (R)
Amazing Grace (D)
Rapunzel (R)

She Loves Me (M)
Sing Down the Moon: Appalachian Wonder Tales
The Best Christmas Pageant Ever (D)
The Lion, The Witch & The Wardrobe (T)
A Woman Called Truth
Nightingale (T)
A Stone That Sings (D)
Aesop’s Fables (O,T)
Alexander & the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day
  2002 - 03 2003-04 2004-05
  Annie (SFM)
Jack and The Wonder Beans (O, T)
The Diary of Anne Frank (R)
The Velveteen Rabbit (R)
The Littlest Angel (D)
Mufaro's Beautiful Daughters (T)
There's a Boy in the Girls' Bathroom (D)
The Odyssey (D)
Lilly's Purple Plastic Purse (R)
Oliver (SFM)
Androcles and the Lion (R)

Tales of Edgar Allan Poe (R)

Fool of the World (T)

Merry Christmas, Strega Nona (D)

Why Mosquitoes Buzz (O, T)

The Wind in the Willows (D)
Tomato Plant Girl (T)
Sideways Stories from Wayside School (R)
Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dream Coat (SFM)
witness (WP)

The Fisherman and his Wife (T)

Where the Red Fern Grows (R)

The Best Christmas Pageant EVER (D, R)

The Legend of John Henry (T)

Cows Don't Fly and other known facts (O, WP, T)

James and the Giant Peach (D)

Miss Nelson is Missing! (R)
  2005-06 2006-07 2007-08
  The Wizard of Oz (SFM)
If you Give  Mouse a Cookie (T)
The Wolf and its Shadows (T)

Tuck Everlasting (R)

The Adventures of Madeline (D)

A Thousand Cranes (T)

Senora Tortuga (T)

Amazing Grace (D)
Alexander's Not, Not, Not, Not, Not Not Going to Move (R)

Charlotte's Web (SSYT)
Seussical the Musical (SFM)
Aesop's Fables (T)
Huckleberry Finn (T)
Charlotte's Web (D)
A Christmas Carol (R)
Cinderella (D)
The Garden of Rikki Tikki Tavi (T)
Anansi the Spider (T)
Bridge to Terabithia (D)
A Year with Frog and Toad (R) 

James and the Giant Peach (SSYT)
Beauty and the Beast (SFM)
The Lion, the Witch and The Wardrobe (T)
Hana's Suitcase ( R)
Old Dry Frye (T)
Alice in Wonderland (D)
A Laura Ingalls Wilder Christmas (R)
Too Many Frogs (T)
Pecos Bill & Sluefoot Sue (T)
The BFG (Big Friendly Giant) (D)
Lilly's Purple Plastic Purse (R) 

Still Life with Iris (SSYT)
  Honk (SFM)
The Giver
The Legend of Sleepy Hollow (T)
Katerina the Clever (T)
If You Take a Mouse to the Movies (R) 
The Snow Queen (D)
Jack and the Wonder Beans (T)
Keeping Mr. Lincoln (T)
The Watson's Go to Birmingham (D)
How I Became a Pirate (R)
Pinocchio (SSYT)
LCT collaborates with Adventure Theatre of Glen Echo, MD to develop If You Give a Pig a Pancake sets and costumes to be shared by both theatres.

LCT commissions author Frank X Walker to write a play based on the life of Lexington Derby winning African American Jockey Isaac Murphy. William Case directs I Dedicate this Ride: The Making of Isaac Murphy and it's world premiere is during the World Equestrian Games of 2010.

Lexington Children's Theatre receives a generous endowment of $2.5 Million to support the Shooting Stars Youtheatre in Rowan and Elliott Counties.

  2009-2010 2010-2011 2011-2012
  Cinderella (SFM)
Pinocchio (R)
The Legend of John Henry (T)
If You Give a Pig a Pancake (R)
The Best Christmas Pageant Ever (D)
The Little Mermaid (T)
The Fisherman and His Wife (T)
Holes (D)
Red Badge of Courage (T)
Go Dog Go! (R)
Snow White (SSYT) 
Willy Wonka (SFM)
I Dedicate this Ride: The Making of Isaac Murphy (O)
If You Give a Mouse a Cookie (T)
River Rat and Cat (T)
Junie B: Jingle Bells, Batman Smells (R)
The Neverending Story (D)
Cows Don't Fly and other know facts (T)
Anne Frank and Me (D)
The Princess Who Lost Her Hair (O,T)
Click Clack Moo: Cows That Type (R)
Annie (SFM)
Charlotte's Web (D)
The Boxcar Children (R)
The Tales of Edgar Allan Poe (T)
Madeline's Christmas (D)
Old Jake's Skirts (T)
Tales of the Shimmering Sky (T)
Sacagawea: Discovering History (T)
There's a Girl in the Boys' Bathroom (D)
Goodnight Moon (R)
Alice in Wonderland (SSYT)


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