Website that Commemorates Playhouse Centennial Goes Live

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – As the Youngstown Playhouse’s centennial draws near, a website has been created to draw attention to the milestone and to two new books and film projects that will chronicle the people and history of the landmark community theater. includes information about the Playhouse and its upcoming celebration. The page is the work of J&B Production Arts Services, L&M Productions and J&B Theatrical Promotions and is not affiliated with the theater.

Two books by J.E. Ballantyne Jr., who is a longtime Valley theater veteran and playwright, will be made available on the site in coming months. Ballantyne is also The Business Journal’s theater critic.

The centennial project also includes a 10-part documentary and a second film with 39 one-on-one interviews with Playhouse actors and personnel over the years.

The main book is “A Place Where the Stars Still Shine,” which will provide a history of the Playhouse, and include hundreds of photographs.

Also coming is “A Youngstown Playhouse Scrapbook,” which will allow readers to journey through the theater’s 100 years of history through photos, news articles and other memorabilia, laid out in scrapbook format.

“The Youngstown Playhouse – A Centennial of Live Theater” will be a 10-part documentary that provides a history of the Playhouse. Co-produced by J&B Production Arts Services and L&M Productions, the documentary will include hundreds of photos, video interviews and candid insights about the Playhouse, including its many ups and downs.

“On the Marquee – Behind the Scenes with Playhouse Personnel,” also co-produced by J&B Production Arts and L&M Productions, will be a series of 39 interviews with Playhouse personnel who offer their recollections of Playhouse incidents, productions and history. 

Interviewees include John Cox, Deborah Switney, Kadey Kimpel, Gene DeCaprio, Rick Blackson, Maureen Collins, Todd Hancock and many more.

Ballantyne explained that the website will start out small but will build during the Playhouse’s current season and its 100th season, which will begin in the second half of next year. He suggests checking back frequently for updated information.

The Centennial Project will also have Facebook and Twitter pages.

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.