Did You Know?


During one particularly stormy night of the 2012 production of Hamlet, power to the Burgess Meredith Little Theater was lost. But it was not the first time a Bread Loaf play was performed without electricity. In fact, one of the earliest productions, A Midsummer Night’s Dream in 1924, was performed on the west lawn using a car’s head beams for lighting. Student actors and producers in the early years were accustomed to coping with a lack of equipment and resources. Preparations for plays were completed outdoors or in the tiny shed behind the original Music Hall, and drama classes were held in the stiflingly hot second floor loft of the shed. After the fire of 1931, Hortense Moore assumed duties as drama director and championed the cause to construct a better stage than the one destroyed. With casting for that summer’s play already set, Moore’s persistence resulted in the design and construction of the Little Theater just in time for the performance six weeks later.