History

The Bucks County Playhouse is located in New Hope, Pennsylvania, at the site of a former grist mill on the banks of the Delaware River. The original structure was built in 1790 when owner Benjamin Parry rebuilt the Hope Mills, which had recently burned down. The newly christened New Hope Mills inspired the village to change its name from Coryell’s Ferry to New Hope.

Facing demolition in the 1930s, the site was saved when a small band of artists, including Broadway playwright and Bucks County resident Moss Hart, helped rally the local community to renovate it as a theater. The Bucks County Playhouse opened on July 1, 1939, with a production of Springtime for Henry, featuring Edward Everett Horton.

Over the next 70 years, a veritable Who’s Who of Hollywood and Broadway legends have played the stage of BCP—Grace Kelly, Angela Lansbury, Bea Arthur, Walter Matthau, Uta Hagen, Leslie Neilson, Jessica Tandy and Hume Cronyn (in their first stage production together), Liza Minnelli, Helen Hayes, Andrea McArdle, June Lockhart, Colleen Dewhurst, Kitty Carlisle, Bert Lahr, and Robert Redford, to name a few.

BCP has also showcased some of the theatre’s most beloved musicals and plays, including She Loves Me, The Glass Menagerie, The Odd Couple, Dial M for Murder, and Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? The Playhouse has also launched many Broadway productions including Neil Simon’s Come Blow Your Horn, Barefoot in the Park, and James Whitmore’s one-man show about Harry Truman, Give ‘Em Hell, Harry!

With the inauguration of the Playhouse’s 2012 season, BCP once again takes its place as “America’s Most Famous Summer Theatre.” Join us as we embark on a new period of creative development and theatrical memories.