We inspire and nurture a love of theatre and the arts.
LAKEWOOD CENTER FOR THE ARTS: A FEW MILESTONES
1952: a group of citizens organizes the Oswego Players, who perform in junior and senior high schools.
1961: The Company—now known as Lake Oswego Community Theatre—buys the vacant Methodist Church on Greenwood Road and converts it to a 100-seat theatre, where they perform 110 productions, in a facility with very limited rehearsal and storage space.
1979: Having outgrown the old church, the theatre company decides to buy Lakewood School and turn it into Lakewood Center for the Arts--a community arts center, complete with a gallery, classrooms for art, dance and music, and a 200-seat theatre.
1987: With funding from individuals, businesses, corporations and foundations—and with no public funding—Lakewood completes a $1.1 million capital campaign for the purchase and remodeling of the building.
1990: Lake Oswego Community Theatre becomes Lakewood Theatre Company, to identify more closely with all the programs at Lakewood Center and to reflect the increasing professionalism and quality of the theatre productions.
2003: Lakewood completes a $3 million project to build a new stage house with fly lofts and traps for the theatre, a remodeled 220 seat theatre with no seat further than 35 feet from the stage, and a new hearing-assisted sound system. Theatre programs now enjoy an average 85-90% sellout rate, mostly from subscriptions.
2012: Lakewood Theatre Company—the oldest continually operating non-profit theatre company in the Portland metro area—attracts more than 40,000 annually to its shows. The annual Lake Oswego Festival of the Arts—a joint project of Lakewood, the Chamber of Commerce, and the City of Lake Oswego—brings more than 23,000 to the Center and nearby George Rogers Park for performances, arts and crafts displays, and viewing of more than 1,000 pieces of artwork.
What else goes on at Lakewood?
- The Community Arts Preschool, offering three- and four-year olds a program enriched with art and dance
- The Rotary Club of Lake Oswego meets weekly in the downstairs Community Meeting Room, which is also used for cabaret theatre, wedding receptions, and conferences
- ReRuns, a resale shop staffed by Lakewood Associates, a support auxiliary of the Center
- Weekly classes in Danceaerobics, exercise, ballet, tap and jazz
As the company is set to begin its 60th performance season, work is underway to remodel the entry foyer; provide additional office space for Lakewood staff; create a Lakewood Gallery; and build a separate Rehearsal Hall/Artist’s Training Facility. As always, Lakewood will operate in the black, and will continue to accomplish its growth without public funds. Come be a part of our success! We welcome your support!
Click here to download a Milestones sheet about Lakewood
Click here to download a one-page Interesting Facts about Lakewood sheet
Click here to download Early History of Lakewood 1978-1987