Most of us today are probably familiar with the concept of live theatre. From the biggest stages on Broadway to our own local community theatre, people everywhere enjoy the opportunity to lose themselves inside someone else’s story. Whether to escape to a new world to forget the problems of your own, or to remind yourself of those problems and what we can do to fix them, the theatre has a profound impact on both the watchers and the creators.

Every year on March 27, theatre workers and those who enjoy the art celebrate World Theatre Day as an observance of the impact theatre has had on humans throughout time. It was first recognized in 1961 by the International Theatre Institute and is celebrating World Theatre Day’s 60th Anniversary this year! The ITI (International Theatre Institute) lists a variety of goals for World Theatre Day, which boil down to a few main points:

  • To promote all types and styles of theatre and the value they bring to society;
  • To enable communities to better promote the performing arts; and
  • To enjoy and share the thrill of live theatre with others in your community and around the world 

World Theatre Day is a day of peace and a celebration of art that humans have been developing for over a thousand years. Oral histories and stories turned into plays which in turn have led us to the movies and television that we know so well. Streaming services provide us easier access than ever to these new forms of theatre, so much so that we don’t even have to leave our homes. But once in a while, take the time to go see a musical or play at your community theatre or any local university theatre department. Appreciate the art that led us here, because it still exists, and still has an incredible impression even today. 

If you want to celebrate World Theatre Day, but aren’t sure how here are a few ideas:

  • Support your local community/university theatres by going out to see a show
  • Here in Salina, we have both the Salina Community Theatre as well as the Kansas Wesleyan Theatre Department that regularly put on performances, go and check them out! 
  • Listen and sing-a-long to your favorite musical soundtrack (My go-to’s are The Producers and Cabaret) 
  • Watch a movie version of your favorite musical or play
  • Read about the history of theatre and how we got from the Ancient Greeks to Shakespeare, to Broadway
  • Read a play you haven’t read before

The Salina Public Library has a host of materials at your fingertips to help you celebrate World Theatre Day however you wish! Here are some books and movies that will have you ready to raise the curtain and bring down the house!


“Hamlet” by William Shakespeare (Print Material) 

“The Globe Guide to Shakespeare” by Andrew Dickson (Print Material)

The Crucible” by Arthur Miller (Print Material)

“Writing Your First Play” by Rodger A. Hall (Print Material)

The Piano Lesson” by August Wilson (Print Material)

Greek Theatre” by Stewart Ross (Print Material)

The Richard Wesley Play Anthology” by Richard Wesley (Hoopla ebook)

“Colored Flames” by Florence J. Mills (Hoopla ebook)

Angels in America” by Tony Kushner (Hoopla ebook)

My Fair Lady (DVD 1998) 

Hairspray (DVD 2009)

Fiddler on the Roof (DVD 2007)

Hello Dolly (DVD 2003) 

In the Heights (DVD 2021)