Terrific New Theatre

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Terrific New Theatre (TNT) is a non-profit community theater company founded in 1986 by director Carl Stewart and stage designer Steve Stella.

TNT's original space was on the 100 block of Richard Arrington Jr Boulevard South. Originally a for-profit venture, the owners shared proceeds in excess of the costs of production with the cast and crew.

Terrific New Theatre was formally granted non-profit status in 1991 and, as part of its mission to promote live theater to larger audiences, inaugurated a tradition dubbed "TADA" (Thursdays Are Discretionary Admission), with attendees invited to pay whatever they deemed affordable for tickets. With Stewart as its guiding light, the company mixed crowd-pleasing comedies with avant-garde plays, both of which were selected to challenge performers as well as audiences.

TNT moved into the Studios at Pepper Place building at 2nd Avenue South in Pepper Place in November 1991, and relocated to a 100-seat space across a hallway within the same building in 1994. Stella, who had designed the staging for every production since the theater's founding, died from AIDS in 1996. Stewart continued to direct every show until retiring at the close of the company's 30th season in July 2016.

Tam DeBolt succeeded Stewart as executive director. She began inviting other directors to helm TNT productions and inaugurated an off-season series entitled "WITS" for "Written in the South," to premiere new works by regional playwrights.

The company's production schedule was interrupted in March 2020 by the COVID pandemic.

In 2023 patrons John and Louise Beard purchased the former Alabama Auction Room building at 2112–2114 5th Avenue North in downtown Birmingham from Ladd Tucker for use by Terrific New Theatre. LIVE Design Group prepared plans for the remodeling, which was undertaken by Locke General Contractors in anticipation of opening in 2024.


  • 1986–1987: "You're Gonna Love Tomorrow," "Eleemosynary," and "The Drawing School Representative"
  • 1987–1988: "To Gillian On Her 37th Birthday," "Seascape with Shark and Dancer," "A...My Name is Alice," "Orphans," "Greater Tuna," and "Beyond Therapy"
  • 1988–1991: "The Normal Heart," "T-Bone 'n Weasel," "Steel Magnolias," "The Boys Next Door," "Little Footsteps," and "The Gifts of the Magi"
  • 1989–1990: "The Octette Bridge Club," "1959 Pink Thunderbird Convertible *with* Laundry and Bourbon," and "Reckless"
  • 1990–1991:
  • 1991–1992: "What I Did Last Summer," "Carbondale Dreams," "Women Folks," "The Heidi Chronicles," "Laughing Wild," and "Lend Me A Tenor"
  • 1992–1993: "Six Women with Brain Death," "Dearly Departed," "Lips Together, Teeth Apart," "Parallel Lives: The Kathy & Mo Show," and "Minor Demons"
  • 1993–1994: "El Grande de Coca Cola," "Marvin's Room," "Suddenly Last Summer," "Talking With," and "The Decline and Fall of the Entire World as Seen Through the Eyes of Cole Porter"
  • 1994–1995: "Wrong Turn at Lungfish," "Keely and Du," "All in the Timing," "The Journey," "A...My Name is Alice," "The Diary of Anne Frank," and 'Jeffrey"
  • 1995–1996: "Five Women Wearing the Same Dress," "The Musical Comedy Murders of 1940," "Four Dogs and A Bone," "Three Viewings," "Shakin' The Mess Out of Misery," "The Boys Next Door," and "Lonely Planet"
  • 1996–1997: "Beehive," "The Food Chain," "Schoolhouse Rock Live," "A Tuna Christmas," "Death Defying Acts," and "Tapestry"
  • 1997–1998: "Middle-Aged White Guys," "Love and Shrimp," "Taking Sides," "Grace and Glorie," "Back to Bacharach and David"
  • 1998–1999: "Whoop-Dee-Doo!", "Scotland Road," "Mere Mortals," "Radio Days," "The Search for Signs of Intelligent Lives in the Universe," and "Pageant"
  • 1999–2000: "Secrets Every Smart Traveler Should Know," "Ruthless," "Moon Over Buffalo," "Violet," "Nothing Sacred (The Widow's Mite)," and "Six Women With Brain Death"
  • 2000–2001: "Sweet and Hot: The Songs of Harold Arlen," "Wit," "Dearly Departed," "Smoke on the Mountain," "Inside Out," and "Parallel Lives: The Kathy & Mo Show"
  • 2001–2002: "Lies and Legends," "When Pigs Fly," "Monky Business," "Fully Committed," "An Empty Plate in the Café du Grand Boeuf," and "Sugar Babies"
  • 2002–2003: "Blown Sideways Through Life," "Pete 'n Keely," "A Sanders' Family Christmas," "The Big Bang," "Dirty Blondes," "Sordid Lives," "Little Mary Sunshine," and "The Taffettas"
  • 2003–2004: "The Exonerated," "Daughters of the Lone Star State," "Moby Dick: The Musical," "Sophie Tucker: Last of the Red Hot Mamas," "Eula Mae's Bait and Tackle," and "John and Jen"
  • 2004–2005: "Southern Baptist Sissies," "Elegies," "Talking Heads," "Sand Mountain Saturday Night," "Shel's Shorts, An Evening of Shel Silverstein," and "Jacques Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris"
  • 2005–2006: "Dearly Departed," "A...My Name Will Always be Still Alice," "Crowns," "The Search for Signs of Intelligent Life in the Universe," "Spoon River Anthology," and "Pageant"
  • 2006–2007: "Die! Mommie! Die!" "Johnny Guitar: The Musical," "Boston Marriage," "Sordid Lives," "The Big Bang," and "The Lady with All the Answers"
  • 2007–2008: "The Glass Mendacity," "Indoor / Outdoor," "Christmas Belles," "Three Viewings," "Doubt," and "Reefer Madness"
  • 2008–2009: "My Trip Down the Pink Carpet" (Leslie Jordan), "El Grande de Coca Cola," "Winter Wonderettes," "Underneath the Lintel," "Southern Baptist Sissies," "The Dixie Swim Club," and "Orphans"
  • 2009–2010: "Of Grapes and Nuts," "China: The Whole Enchilada," "Jewtopia," "Kathy & Mo Show," "In Her Own Fashion," "Sophie Tucker: Last of the Red Hot Mamas"
  • 2010–2011: "In Her Own Fashion," "November," "The Lying Kind," "Lend Me a Tenor," "Chip in the Sugar & Bust," and "Elephant's Graveyard"
  • 2011–2012: "Red, White, and Tuna," "[title of show]," "The Mystery of Irma Vep," "Take a Ride on the Reading," "God of Carnage," "Some Girls," and "Tuna Does Vegas"
  • 2012–2013: "The 39 Steps," "Sister Robert Anne's Cabaret Class," "Mrs. Mannerly," "Circle Mirror Transformation," "Standing On Ceremony," "Greater Tuna"
  • 2013–2014: "Rumors," "Suddenly Last Summer," "A Tuna Christmas," "Dearly Departed," "Tony Curtis Speaks Italian and All I Can Say Is I Love You," "Pageant: The Musical"
  • 2014–2015: "The Fantastiks," "Farewell To Summer," "The Bible: The Complete Word of God (Abridged)," "I'll Eat You Last," "A...My Name is Alice," and "Becoming Dr Ruth"
  • 2015–2016: "Sordid Lives," "SINgularly Sordid" (Del Shores), "Clark Gable Slept Here," "Life In The Theater," "Bad Jews," "Matt and Ben," "Sophie Tucker: Last of the Red Hot Mamas," and "Search Party" (Dolores Hydock)
  • 2016–2017: "Daddy's Dyin': Who's Got the Will?" "Sordid Stories," "Grand Concourse," "Love is a Blue Tick Hound," "Bingo! The Winning Musical," "The Mystery of Love & Sex," "An Act of God," and "The Savannah Sipping Society"
  • 2017–2018: "The Tribute Artist," "That Girl/That Boy" (Charles Busch), "The Big Meal," "Split in Three," "Nunsense," "Buyer & Cellar," "Pump Boys & Dinettes," "Six Characters in Search of a Play," and "Shirley Valentine"
  • 2018–2019: "The Book of Merman," "Having Our Say," "...And Then I Got My Uke" (Norton Dill), "Throw Me on the Burnpile and Light Me Up," "Fun Home," "Morningside," "The Royale," and "Bus Stop"
  • 2019–2020: "The Cake," "The Story of My Life," "Paper Thin," "It's a Wonderful Life," "Every Brilliant Thing," and "A Doll's House" / "A Doll's House, Part 2"


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