HISTORY OF TNT
TNT originally was organized in January 1948 as an offshoot of a YWCA study group supervised by Mrs. Stephen (Dorothy) Gmucs. As the desire grew for a theatre group, Mrs. Thorn (Frances) Pendleton was contacted for assistance. She agreed but, unsure of the chances for survival of such a group in Warren, strict standards were established including the principle of being self-supporting. TNT is not and has never been subsidized, it has always been self-supporting. Those early meetings and rehearsals required everyone to put a quarter in a kitty until enough was collected to finance an evening of one acts. In May 1948, with $60 TNT was underway with the first production – in the Pendleton living room! During the first 9 years the group wandered from private living room to church auditorium, to a Main Street loft, to school auditoriums. Then, in 1955, the land here on Youngstown Road was purchased for $3,750.
Designed by member-architect Tom Schroth, construction of the Playhouse began in the fall of 1956, built by the members—a labor of love! It included the auditorium, stage, light bridge, inner lobby and restrooms, with an initial cost of a little over $25,000. Since the formal opening in the spring of 1957, additions and improvements have cost in excess of $250,000. These include retirement of the original mortgage, purchase of additional land, outer lobby, landscaping, new seats, the workshop (dressing room, bathrooms, wardrobe, prop storage, office and set construction area), a new auditorium roof and annual permanent set, lighting and sound equipment upgrades. In the early 90’s the parking lot was paved and air conditioning was added, allowing the theatre to be used year-round. In November 2005 the wheelchair accessibility project was completed, at a cost of $35,000.
Income from ticket sales and contributions by patrons, members, friends and area businesses provide for all expenses incurred by the productions, general maintenance and improvement programs as they become necessary. Since 1975 TNT has annually provided scholarships to Trumbull County students.
The organization is run primarily on volunteerism. Only the cleaning staff is paid, along with stipends for the directors and musicians. Many of our directors and actors have received their training within TNT. The Women’s Committee lends major support to the patron drive and fund-raising activities.
TNT is a COMMUNITY Theatre—open to everyone! Ever thought you would like to act, sing, direct, pound a nail, paint a set, sew a hem, usher or participate in any way? Come join us!
To receive the company newsletter, Curtain Call, just leave your name and address at the Box Office. This publication keeps you informed of “what’s happening” with the group and when auditions and help are needed.