Theatre Timeline

1964

First production, “Harvey,” rehearsed at Girl Scout House, performed at local Wisconsin movie theater (then a singular theater).
Incorporation of Beaver Dam Community Theatre.

1965

Two shows: “Arsenic and Old Lace,” and first musical, “South Pacific,” performed at the Wisconsin theater; rehearsals above *”One-Hour Martinizing,” on Front Street, in a warehouse on N. Center, and in a grocery store basement on S. Spring.

1966

Three show season established: fall and spring shows, plus a summer musical.

1967

St. John’s Lutheran Church, corner of Lincoln and Maple, purchased and renovated as BDCT’s workshop and rehearsal building. Performances continued at movie theater.

1974

Tell-A-Tale Children’s Theatre originated.

1981

In addition to its two “in-school” shows for children, TAT season increased its number of summer shows — one by grade school children and one by Jr/Sr High students.
BDCT established the “spotlight,” in show programs, giving special recognition to long-term BDCT supporters.

1982

Tell-A-Tale Council established.

1983

In its twentieth season, BDCT purchased the former Baptist Church on the corner of Spring and Third Streets.

1984/85

TAT conducted a pilot drama class as part of the Beaver Dam Junior High School curriculum.

1985

Major community fund drive conducted to support the building improvements needed to transform the church into a workable theater.
Tell-A-Tale expanded its “in-school” program beyond Beaver Dam, touring to other area schools.
BDCT “On Call” traveling entertainment troupe established.
STAGE II concept introduced for alternative, experimental, and small budget programs.
BOWS AND HOLLY holiday variety show, now a tradition, initiated.

1989

25th anniversary year-long celebration.

1991

BDCT presented “Do You Remember,” celebrating Beaver Dam’s Sesquicentennial. (First production in the new Beaver Dam High School auditorium; the main season summer musicals continue to be presented in the auditorium.)

1997

BDCT premiered a full-scale original musical, “Any Color You Like As Long As It’s Black.”

1998

To emphasize area participation and support, BDCT became Beaver Dam AREA Community Theatre.

2000

Replacement of church pews with 219 real theater seats.

2002

BDACT employed a half time Managing Director.

2004

TAT celebrates its 30th Anniversary and BDACT celebrates its 40th Anniversary Year with many shows and programs, including STAGE II “Roots and Wings” concerts showcasing its “alums.”

2014

BDACT’s 50th anniversary celebration brought back many performers who had grown up with this community theatre and continued on to perform professionally.

*Other performance locations throughout the years: Wayland Academy, Dreger’s Village Square (now the Elks Club), Wilson School, the Beaver Mall, the Beaver Dam Junior High School gymnasium (now the Middle School).

From the first BDCT review about its first show, “Harvey,” published in the Beaver Dam Citizen in 1964 – (The same could be said for all of our productions) “It was gratifying to read in the program how many Beaver Dam area citizens and families participated in some phase of the production… Perhaps the best aspect of the whole thing was that the cast and staff seemed to enjoy doing the play as much as the audience enjoyed seeing it.”