Through the Years

This Washington Post feature previews the reopening of The National Theatre in 1984 after extensive renovations. The occasion was marked with a production of the celebrated musical 42nd Street. This and other mementos from The National’s reopening can be found in The National Theatre Archives.

Through the Years takes a closer look at some of The National’s key milestones in three pages. Breaking Ground examines the first fifty years of The National’s life, taking into account its founding, its struggles, and its many physical iterations. By and large, these first fifty years were all about survival, but there were plenty of highlights to savor along the way. By the time the 19th century was drawing to a close, The National was on fairly Sure Footing: stars aplenty were trodding the boards and dignitaries from the Washington elite were frequent visitors. Even though The National has enjoyed relative stability since those fraught early days, the world around it is constantly transforming. In Changing Landscapes, we see The National fighting to stay relevant in a competitive market and a city that is growing physically and culturally. Remember to keep an eye out for goodies in the From the Archive and Consider This sections.