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Olney Theatre Center

Olney Theatre Center

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Though it is located well outside the Beltway, the Olney Theatre Center is one of the premiere venues for theatrical productions and education in the Washington D.C. area.  It is one of two state theaters in Maryland, and occupies a 14-acre property that includes three stages, the Historic Stage, Mainstage, and Mulitz-Gudelsky Theatre Lab.  The Olney offers a full season of dramatic productions, from popular Broadway musicals to Off-Broadway plays by local authors.

Opened in 1938, the Olney Theatre has featured some of the nation’s most lauded actors on its stage, from Gloria Swanson to Burl Ives to Ian McKellen.  The Center offers a wide range of programs in addition to its subscription season, including a Family Entertainment series, school performances, a free Summer Shakespeare Festival, post-show talks and an intensive summer theater program for students.  The Olney Theatre Center is also affiliated with the National Players, America’s longest running classical touring company.

Olney Theatre Center Information

  • Public Transportation: Fair (accessible by a combo of Metro and bus, plus a 10-minute walk; bus stops running at 11 p.m.)
  • Handicapped Accessibility: Good
  • Performances/Programs: Olney Center programming includes plays, musicals, children’s shows, and musical performances; it’s also the home of the National Players
  • Ticket Prices: Vary. A $5 discount is always available for students and $10 student Rush tickets are frequently available on the day of performance. Some pay-what-you-can performances are also offered. Free summer Shakespeare performances are presented, as well. Shows also frequently available on
  • Group Discounts: Discounts available for groups of 15 or more
  • Subscriptions: Subscriptions start at $186 for a six-show subscription. Benefits include a $5 discount on additional tickets, discounted tickets to family events, unlimited free ticket exchanges, lost-ticket replacement, and priority seating.