How Phoenix Theatre Company became AZ’s longest lasting arts group

By Weldon B. Johnson | The Republic

The Phoenix Theatre Company has come a long way since its early days when it was known as the Phoenix Players and performed in schools, backyards and, in a step up, an old coach house at Central Avenue and McDowell Road.

As the organization celebrates its 100th anniversary this year, it is part of the core of the city’s arts and cultural community and has a multimillion-dollar budget. That coach house, which the Phoenix Little Theatre was grateful to get in 1924, has been replaced by a state-of-the-art theater with three stages.

Founded in 1920, today the Phoenix Theatre Company is the oldest surviving arts organization in Arizona and one of the longest-lasting in the country.

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