Webster University Student Theatre Chronology

1915: Webster University is founded as Loretto College by the Sisters of Loretto.

1917: The Loretto Players perform their first major play, The Ladies of Cranford.

1928: The Loretto Players perform Ronald Castlemain's Romance (by Louise Van Voorhis Armstrong), the first-ever "masked" play in St. Louis, combining pantomime and modern dance.


1930: Webster's Loretto Players become the first amateur cast to perform The Cradle Song in the St. Louis area.

1934: Webster College establishes a department of speech and offers a major in speech (including theater) for the first time.

1939: Harry McClain starts the tradition of making a pilgrimage to the Shakespeare statue in Tower Grove Park in St. Louis.

1957: Sr. Marita Michenfelder (later Marita Woodruff) becomes head of the Speech and Drama Department at Webster.

1962: Sr. Marita Michenfelder and Wayne Loui create Theatre Impact, a Webster College troupe of students and professionals which presented outdoor summertime productions.

1962: Men are allowed to take classes in the arts at Webster.

1966: The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis is founded as part of Webster College and the Loretto-Hilton Center opens.

1967: The Conservatory curriculum is established, marking a new approach to the foundational skill courses.

1982: The Theatre Arts Department is renamed the Theatre and Dance Department.

2010: With the creation of a separate Dance Department, the theatre department is named the Conservatory of Theatre Arts.