Skip to main content

Virginia Stage Company Records

 Collection
Collection ID: MG 123

Scope and Contents

The collection includes materials related to the Virginia Stage Company and its predecessors - the Norfolk Theater Center and the Stage Down Under.  Materials include organizational records, correspondence, budgets and financial records, event flyers and programs, personnel and membership records, marketing materials, and news clippings.  Records related to the Wells Theater, the Monroe Building, and other venues and spaces owned or leased by the organization are also included.  Materials date from 1968 to 2014.

Dates

  • circa 1968-2014, undated
  • Other: Date acquired: 02/05/2016

Creator

Extent

8.5 Linear Feet

Conditions Governing Access

Open to researchers without restrictions.

Conditions Governing Use

Before publishing quotations or excerpts from any materials, permission must be obtained from Special Collections and University Archives, and the holder of the copyright, if not Old Dominion University Libraries.

Biographical or Historical Information

The Virginia Stage Company (VSC) was originally founded as the Norfolk Theater Center in 1968. Originally, theater productions took place in a 120 seat space at the Norfolk Public Library on Freemason Street. In the mid-1970s, productions were moved to a space under Chrysler Hall.  At that time, the Norfolk Theater Center became the Stage Downunder at Scope.  In a move to develop the organization into a professional theater, the organization’s Board of Trustees adopted the name “Virginia Stage Company” and began hiring professional staff in 1978.  Planning was aided by the National Foundation for the Expansion and Development of American Theater.  With expansion plans in place, the Virginia Stage Company needed to find a venue for productions.  Out of 49 possible venues, the Norfolk Wells Theater was chosen. With the help of the Norfolk Redevelopment and Housing Authority, funds were raised for the purchase of the Wells Theater.  In October 1979, the lease was purchased and initial renovations were begun.  The Virginia Stage Company premiered its opening season at the Wells on February 7, 1980.  In 1986, the Wells Theater was fully restored and became a National Historic Landmark. The Virginia Stage Company is Hampton Roads only professional theater company. The VSC produces six plays per year running from September through April.  In addition to theater productions, the organization provides educational and community engagement programs including student matinees, in-school tours, workshops, and a summer theater camp. References: http://www.vastage.org/ [url=https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Virginia_Stage_Company]https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Virginia_Stage_Company[/url]

Note written by Mel Frizzell

Language of Materials

English

Abstract

Originally founded as the Norfolk Theater Center in 1968 and later renamed in 1978, the Virginia Stage Company is Hampton Roads only professional theater company. The VSC produces six plays per year running from September through April.  In addition to theater productions, the organization provides educational and community engagement programs including student matinees, in-school tours, workshops, and a summer theater camp.

Arrangement Note

Series Descriptions: Series I: Norfolk Theater Center / Stage Down Under (1968-78) Sub-series A: Business and Organization. This sub-series contains business and organizational materials for the Norfolk Theater Center and the Stage Downunder.  Included are reports, meeting minutes and agendas, personnel and committee information, handbooks, and similar items.  Materials are separated by Norfolk Theater Center or Stage Downunder.  Otherwise they are in alphabetical order.  Materials date from 1968 to 1980. Sub-series B: Correspondence.  This sub-series contains correspondence to and from the Norfolk Theater Center and the Stage Downunder.  Materials are separated by Norfolk Theater Center or Stage Downunder.  Otherwise they are in chronological order.  Materials date from 1974 to 1979. Sub-series C: Finance / Fundraising. This sub-series contains materials related to the finances and fundraising efforts of the Norfolk Theater Center and the Stage Downunder.  Included materials are related to fundraising campaigns, budgets, bank statements, grants, receipts and invoices, and financial reports.  Also included are production cost analyses for a handful of productions.  Materials are separated by Norfolk Theater Center or Stage Downunder.  Otherwise they are in chronological order.  Materials date from 1968 to 1979. Sub-series D: Events/ programming. This sub-series contains materials related to events and programming hosted by the Norfolk Theater Center and the Stage Downunder.  Included are invitations, programs, and planning materials. Materials are separated by Norfolk Theater Center or Stage Downunder.  Otherwise they are in chronological order.  Materials date from 1968 to 1978. Sub-series E: Marketing / Publicity. This sub-series contains brochures, pamphlets, press releases, newsletters, marketing plans, and other materials related to marketing and publicity for the Norfolk Theater Center and the Stage Downunder.  Materials are separated by Norfolk Theater Center or Stage Downunder.  Otherwise they are in chronological order.  Materials date from 1975 to 1978. Sub-series F: Membership.  This sub-series contains materials related to membership in the Norfolk Theater Center and the Stage Downunder.  Included are membership brochures, membership campaign materials, and other member related items. Materials are separated by Norfolk Theater Center or Stage Downunder.  Otherwise they are in chronological order.  Materials date from 1975 to 1978. Sub-series G: Miscellaneous. This sub-series contains materials related to the Norfolk Theater Center and the Stage Downunder that do not fit under other sub-series.  This includes notes, discount cards, tickets, notices, memorabilia, and other materials. Materials are separated by Norfolk Theater Center or Stage Downunder.  Otherwise they are in alphabetical order.  Materials date from 1974 to 1978. Series II: Virginia Stage Company (1978 to Present) Sub-series A: Business and Organization. This sub-series contains business and organizational materials for the Virginia Stage Company.  Materials include bylaws, mission and purpose statements, meeting agendas and minutes, committee information, personnel information, reports, handbooks, agreements, resolutions, and similar items.  Materials are arranged alphabetically by topic and chronologically within topics.  Materials date from 1978 to 2010. Sub-series B: Correspondence.  This sub-series contains correspondence to and from the Virginia Stage Company.  Material is arranged chronologically and dates from 1979 to 2012. Sub-series C: Finance / Fundraising. This sub-series contains materials related to the finances and fundraising efforts of the Virginia Stage Company.  Included are materials related to fundraising campaigns, budgets, grants, receipts and invoices, and financial reports.  Materials are arranged alphabetically by topic and are arranged chronologically within topics. Materials date from 1980 to 2009. Sub-series D: Events/ programming. This sub-series contains materials related to events and programming hosted by the Virginia Stage Company.  Included are invitations, programs, and planning materials.  Material is arranged alphabetically and then by date or season.  Dates of materials range from 1980 through 2009 Sub-series E: Marketing / Publicity. This sub-series contains brochures, pamphlets, press releases, newsletters, marketing plans, and other materials related to marketing and publicity for the Virginia Stage Company.  Material dates from 1980 to 2006. Folders are arranged alphabetically by subject and chronologically within each subject. Sub-series F: Personnel. This sub-series contains materials related to Virginia Stage Company Personnel.  Included are resumes, search committees, evaluations, and other such information.  Also included is information on interns and volunteers.  Most of the materials are from the 1990s and early 2000s, though some material from the 1980s is included in the folders.  Many items are not dated.  Material is arranged alphabetically. Sub-series G: Miscellaneous.  This sub-series contains materials related to the Virginia Stage Company that do not fit under other sub-series.  This includes notes, photos, lists, speeches, and other items.  Most materials are not dated.  They are arranged alphabetically. Sub-series H: Wells Theater, Monroe Building, and Other Venues. This sub-series contains materials related to buildings and spaces associated with the Virginia Stage Company.  The majority of the materials related to the purchase and renovation of the Wells Theater.  Other venues include the Monroe Building and the Stage Downunder.  Materials are arranged chronologically and date from 1979 through 2011. Series III: News Clippings. This series contains newspaper and magazine clippings related to the Virginia Stage Company, Norfolk Theater Center, and related topics.  Material is arranged chronologically and dates from 1975 through 2014. Series IV: Other Organizations.  This series contains information related to a handful of other organizations related to the Virginia Stage Company and its members.  This includes the Metropolitan Arts Congress of Tidewater, the Norfolk Commission on the Arts and Humanities, the Virginia Commission for the Arts, the Virginia Opera Association, and the Virginia Orchestra group among others. Most materials date from the late 1970s through the 1990s.  Material is arranged alphabetically by the name of the organization and then chronologically if there is more than one folder for an organization. Series V: Posters. This series contains oversize posters related to the Virginia Stage Company and the Wells Theater.  Materials are undated and are arranged alphabetically.

Source of Acquisition

Gift of Robert E. Brown

Method of Acquisition

Acc. 2016.005 was given to Special Collections and University Archives from the donor on 2/5/2016.

Processing Information

The collection was processed and the finding aid was created by Mel Frizzell, Special Collections Assistant, from May 2016 to March 2017.
Title
A Guide to the Virginia Stage Company Records
Author
Mel Frizzell
Date
09/12/2017
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
English
Script of description
Latin
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.

Repository Details

Part of the Community Collections Repository

Contact:
3000 Perry Library
4427 Hampton Blvd.
Norfolk VA 23529 US
757-683-5350