Birmingham Festival Theatre

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Entrance to Birmingham Festival Theatre in May 2011

The Birmingham Festival Theatre (BFT) is a theater company which was founded in 1972 by Carl Stewart, Randy Marsh and Vic Fichtner after the demise of Bill Ozier's Birmingham Actors' Studio.

The company's first production, "The Threepenny Opera", was staged in the 2nd floor auditorium at the East Lake Library. For the rest of that season, performances were moved to the Munger Hall auditorium at Birmingham-Southern College.

BFT opened its current playhouse in the Fred Jones Building at 1901½ 11th Avenue South, upstairs from Golden Temple, in 1973. In 1987 the theater was remodeled by modifying the structure to eliminate columns in the performance space and to add a lobby and restrooms in an area previously used as a loading dock.

The theater is managed by a volunteer board of directors.


  • 1972: "The Threepenny Opera", "A Taste of Honey", "Charley's Aunt", "She Loves Me"
  • 1973: "Love-In", "Billy the Kid", "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?". "The Amorous Flea", "Juno and the Paycock", "The Boys in the Band", "The Decline and Fall of the Entire World as Seen through the Eyes of Cole Porter", "No Strings", "The Night of the Iguana."
  • 1974: "The Effects of Gamma Rays on the Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds", "Berlin to Broadway", "The Country Girl", "Jacques Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris", "Blithe Spirit", "What the Butler Saw", "The Seagull", "My Heart's in the Highlands"
  • 1975: "And Miss Reardon Drinks a Little", "Oh Coward!", "Severino, Death and Life of a Stone", "The Killing of Sister George", "Trouble in Tahiti", "El Grande de Coca-Cola", "Who's Happy Now?", "When You Coming Back, Red Ryder?"
  • 1976: "George Gershwin Revue", "Holy Ghosts", "Sweet Bird of Youth", "Kennedy's Children", "A Little Night Music", "Same Time Next Year", "Three Sisters"
  • 1977: "Davis, J.", "The House of Blue Leaves", "Southern Comfort", "Butley", "The Last Meeting of the Knights of the White Magnolia", "The Oldest Living Graduate"
  • 1978: "Lu Ann Hampton Laverty Oberlander", "The Mystery Play", "The Beggar's Opera", "Streamers", "The Runner Stumbles", "Starting Here, Starting Now", "Knock, Knock", "Welcome to Andromeda"
  • 1979: "P. S. Your Cat is Dead", "The Shadow Box", "Side by Side by Sondheim", "Counter Culture/1967", "That Championship Season", "Bad Habits", "The Belle of Amherst"
  • 1980: "Dummy, or, Your Lips are Moving", "Hay Fever", "The Real Inspector Hound", "For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide"/"When the Rainbow is Enuf", "Ashes", "Anyone Can Whistle"
  • 1981: "The Hostage", "A Life in Theatre", "El Grande de Coca-Cola", "A Breeze from the Gulf", "Old Flames", "The Club"
  • 1982: "Childe Byron", "A Variation on Macbeth", "Getting Out", "Only Clowns Wander Here", "A Coupla White Chicks Sitting Around Talking", "Dylan"
  • 1983: "Uncommon Women and Others", "The 1940s Radio Hour", "Fifth of July", "Talley's Folley", "The Glass Menagerie", "The Real Queen of Hearts Ain't Even Pretty"
  • 1984: "Happy Birthday Wanda June", "Perfectly Frank", "March of the Falsettos", "The Wake of Jamey Foster", "The Blacks: A Clown Show"
  • 1985: "Agnes of God", "Royal Gambit", "Hooters", "A Soldier's Tale", "Fool for Love", "Cloud 9"
  • 1986: "The Dresser", "Painting Churches", "Wings", "Buried Child", "The Woolgatherer", "Talking With..."
  • 1987: "Quilters", "The Adding Machine", "A Soldier's Play", "Twelfth Night"
  • 1988: "What the Butler Saw", "Personals", "A Lie of the Mind", "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?", "Waiting for Godot"
  • 1989: "Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune", "Tartuffe", "Burn This", "Glengarry Glen Ross", "Foxfire", "I'm Not Rappaport"
  • 1990: "Veronica's Room", "The Road to Mecca", "Mass Appeal", "Betrayal", "The Belle of Amherst", "The Mystery of Irma Vep" (Birmingham Reportory Theatre)
  • 1991: "They're Playing Our Song", "Speed-the-Plow", "A Delicate Balance", "Zoo Story"/"The Duck Variations", "Fences", "On the Verge"
  • 1992: "A Touch of the Poet", "Breaking the Silence", "The Secret Rapture", "Tales of the Lost Formicans", "Assassins", "Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead"
  • 1993: "The Lion in Winter", "Some Things You Need to Know Before the World Ends (A FInal Evening with the Illuminati)", "My Children, My Africa!", "Shirley Valentine", "Festival Festival of the New Plays", "The Fantasticks", "A Woman in Mind (December Bee)", "Righting the Perfect Girl"/"Ménage à 2½"
  • 1994: "The Subject was Roses", "Top Girls", "Purlie Victorious", "Love Letters", "Don Juan in Hell", "Many Things Have Happened Since He Died and Here are the Highlights", "The Importance of Being Earnest", "The Last Meeting of the Knights of the White Magnolia"
  • 1995: "Six Degrees of Separation", "Al Dempart for Governor", "Oleanna", "Ali", "Falsettos", "The 2nd Festival Festival of New Plays"
  • 1995–1996: "A Thousand Clowns", "Someone Who'll Watch Over Me", "Jake's Women", "Hunting Cockroaches", "Angry Housewives", "A Perfect Ganesh", "The Last Hotel for Women" (Southern Playworks)
  • 1996–1997: "Sylvia", "Raised in Captivity", "Barefoot in the Park", "The Ladies of Tennessee", "American Buffalo", "Alabama Rain", "Gloria Duplex" (Southern Playworks)
  • 1997–1998: "The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie", "Romance/Romance", "Second Samuel", "Three Tall Women", "Travels With My Aunt", "Night of the Iguana"
  • 1998–1999: "How I Learned to Drive", "Fifth of July", "Picasso at the Lapin Agile", "Many Things Have Happened Since He Died and Here are the Highlights", "The Threepenny Opera", "Jack & Jill", "Catfish Moon" (Southern Playworks), "Two Kinds of Romantics" (Southern Playworks)
  • 1999–2000: "The Last Night of Ballyhoo", "As Bees in Honey Drown", "Closer than Ever", "Death of a Salesman", "Master Class", "Gross Indecency: The Three Trials of Oscar Wilde"
  • 2000–2001: "The Dining Room", "The Beauty Queen of Leenane", "Popcorn", "Three Days of Rain", "The Sisters Rosensweig", "Angels in America: Millennium Approaches"
  • 2001–2002: "The Country Club", "Putting it Together", "The SantaLand Diaries"/"Seasons Greetings", "Spinning Into Butter", "Having Our Say: The Delany Sisters' First 100 Years", "Art", "The Laramie Project"
  • 2002–2003: "Boy Gets Girl", "Dinner with Friends", "Inspecting Carol", "Hello Again", "The Belle of Amherst", "Angels in America Part Two: Perestroika", "Tom Jones", "Shirley Valentine"
  • 2003–2004: "Apartment 3A", "The Guys", "The Fourth Wall", "Absurd Person Singular", "The Little Foxes", "Hedwig and the Angry Inch", "Copenhagen"
  • 2004–2005: "The Goat or Who is Sylvia?", "The Subject Tonight is Love", "Jacob Marley's Christmas Carol", "Jar the Floor", "Take Me Out", "The Vast Difference", "Collected Stories"
  • 2005–2006: "First Lady Suite", "Hazard County", "The Trial of Ebenezer Scrooge", "Reindeer Monologues", "Intimate Apparel", "Voice of Good Hope", "Over the River and Through the Woods", "Line and Acrobats"
  • 2006–2007: "The Oldest Profession", "Fat Pig", "Woman in Black", "Reindeer Monologues", "Mahalia", "The Children's Hour", "Frozen", "I Am My Own Wife", "Fuddy Meers"
  • 2007–2008: "Moonlight and Magnolias", "Quills", "The Santaland Diaries"/"Seasons Greetings", "Hiding Behind Comets", "Elegies for Angels, Punks and Raging Queens", "The Tale of the Allergist's Wife", "The White Rose", "The Underpants"
  • 2008–2009: "Tuesdays with Morrie", "Rabbit Hole", "The Little Dog Laughed", "Kindertransport", "Miss Witherspoon", "Sunset Limited", "Screwups!", "The Great Wrong Way: Broadway Favorites Backwards"
  • 2009–2010: "The Cocktail Hour", "Bus Stop", "The Musical Comedy Murders of 1940", "Dead Man's Cell Phone", "Almost, Maine", "Tobacco Road"
  • 2010–2011: "Talking With", "Lobby Hero", "Becky Shaw", "Around the World in 80 Days", "Anna in the Tropics", "Cobb"
  • 2011–2012: "That Championship Season", "Quilters," "Becky Shaw," "Holy Ghosts," "Hay Fever", "The Last Hotel for Women"
  • 2012–2013: "Black Pearl Sings!" "Love, Loss & What I Wore," "Yankee Tavern," "Red,", "Beauty of the Father," "The Last Flapper"
  • 2013–2014: "Clybourne Park," "Other Desert Cities," "Grace," "Quartet," "The Book of Liz," "Gidion's Knot"
  • 2014–2015: "Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike," "Completeness," "Tribes," "Venus in Fur"
  • 2015–2016:
  • 2016–2017: "Red Herring," "I and You," "Stop Kiss," "Crimes of the Heart"
  • 2017–2018: "Becky’s New Car," "The Dresser,", "Picasso at the Lapine Agile," "Everything in the Garden," "The Diviners", "Well"
  • 2018–2019: "The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time", "The Good Doctor", "Maytag Virgin", "The Mountaintop", "Tea and Sympathy", "Songs for a New World"
  • 2019–2020: "Our Town", "Picnic", "The Ice Front" (shortened due to COVID-19)
  • 2021–2022: (shortened due to COVID-19) "The Ice Front"
  • 2021–2022: "Puffs", "Glengarry Glen Ross", "Significant Other", "Sordid Lives", "Clue", "Anatomy of Gray"
  • 2022–2023: "How I Learned to Drive", "Side by Side", "Waiting for Godot", "The Mountaintop", "The Musical Comedy Murders of 1940", "Boy"

External links