"America's Oldest Little Theatre" - The Vagabond Players
"America's Oldest Little Theatre" - The Vagabond Players. The Vagabond Players was established in 1916 during the popular "Little Theatre Movement" and quickly established itself as an important part of theatre history. We are nearing our one hundredth season of continuously operating theatre here in Baltimore. The first play produced by Vagabonds was an original piece submitted by H.L. Mencken The Artist. Vagabonds proceeded to encourage and produce the writings of a young and at the time, unknown Eugene O'Neill, as well as Arthur Schnitzler, and introducing to Baltimore new works by August Strindberg and Maurice Maeterlinck.
During the 1920's this 'Little Theatre' held fast to its amateur status despite Governor Ritchie and Mayor Broening urging the group to turn professional. Thus The Vagabond Players outlived The Provincetown Playhouse in Massachusetts and The Neighborhood Playhouse in New York, both of which were Little Theatres that turned professional and shortly there after dissolved.