As eloquently stated in The New York Times, The Schoolhouse Theater & Arts Center, is a "venerable" cultural center devoted to professional theater at the highest possible standard. We are committed to bringing new, innovative and ground breaking programs and plays to the community. It is a place where new work is explored, a place where things begin. Additionally, our galleries also host local artists, sculptors, and photographers from all over the county.
Through classes for children, live theater, live music, Lee's Cafe (events showcasing local young musical talent in our art galleries), stand-up comedy, slam poetry, story telling and other creative programs, we have sought to be a landmark home for all of the arts in Westchester County.
Lee Pope is the legend behind The Schoolhouse Theater & Arts Center. Pope, the theater's founder, transformed an old elementary school building (1925) into a freshly minted visual arts center in Croton Falls in 1983, turning classrooms into galleries and studio spaces showing the paintings, photography and sculpture of many of Westchester's most notable artists. At that time, the cafeteria/gym was simply a white-walled room with twelve borrowed lights and no risers. In 1986, Jack Palance's daughter Brooke and actor/producer Michael Wilding (son of Elizabeth Taylor) performed Bedroom Farce and the curtain went up on Westchester's oldest non-profit professional theater thirty-five years ago!
The Schoolhouse has been honored by visits from quite a number of theater luminaries including playwrights Jules Feiffer, John Barton, George Furth, Tina Howe, Michael Weller, and Paul Zindel, who all came to see productions of their work and lend support to our theater.
Legendary critic Alvin Klein, who wrote more than 40 reviews for the New York Times, summed it up best: "It's one of my favorite theaters. A jewel. 99 seats. There's nothing like it. Where else are you going to see Albee, Saroyan or Williams? They're gutsy!"
We have successfully launched seven productions to Off-Broadway: BH Barry's
Enlightenment of Mr. Mole, Arthur Miller's The Crucible, Ingmar Bergman's Nora, S.N. Behrman's Biography, Elaine Del Valle's Brownsville Bred, then Triad-bound Love, Linda
directed by Richard Maltby, Jr. and L.O.V.E.R starring Lois Robbins moved to The Pershing Square Signature Theater this time last year. An eighth play, Jim Dale's multiple award-winning charmer, Just Jim Dale, made the reverse commute from The Roundabout to The Schoolhouse last winter...others, Jesse Kornbluth's The Color of Light about Henri Matisse, and multiple Emmy award-winner Dorothy Lyman's haunting Gladstone Hollow...are still in the works for potential transfers...
We are also grateful and proud to note that the celebrated and coveted Lifetime Arts Community Award was bestowed by ArtsWestchester in 2018 on our own Leandra Pope, Schoolhouse Theater & Arts Center's Founder.