Diamond Head Theatre is the Broadway of the Pacific. It produces Hawaii’s best live community theatre entertainment and advances theatre arts through education.
WE ARE HAWAII’S
BROADWAY OF THE PACIFIC
For more than a century, Diamond Head Theatre has served as Hawaii’s Broadway of the Pacific. We hold the distinction of serving as the nation’s third oldest and continually operating community theatre.
For over a century, hundreds of thousands of people have been entertained, inspired and enlightened at Diamond Head Theatre through the magic of live theatre. We are a true community center and a gathering place for keiki to kupuna. Our theatre community is composed of actors, musicians, production crew members, directors, designers, school groups, educators and more. Our productions include an all-volunteer cast and crew who celebrate entertainment with the joy of music, song and dance.
Each season we offer six theatrical productions of which five are major musicals on a scale that rivals Broadway.
We provide workshops and year-round classes in theatrical arts with acting, voice, and dance. We offer an extensive summer school program for children and teens, and DHT is the proud home of youth performing troupe called Diamond Head Theatre Shooting Stars. Education will always be a major part of our mission.
As an independent, local nonprofit organization, all that we do is led by a talented team of staff and a board of directors.
On April 28, 1915, a new theatrical group called The Footlights was formed. Its first production The Amazons by Pinero starred many prominent Honolulu citizens inlcuding Will Lewers, Mrs. Walter F. Dillingham, Helen Alexander, Margaret Center and Gerrit Wilder. Held at Honolulu Opera House, where Honolulu’s Merchant Street Post Office stands, these collective performances would serve as the spirited beginning of the nation’s third-oldest, continuously operating theatre in the entire United States.
In 1934, The Footlights growing popularity led to its evolution as Honolulu Community Theatre. Its original mission still stands: “Community service through the art of theatre, involving Hawaii’s people as audience members, stage crew and performers.”
During World War II, productions entertained thousands of troops with more than 300 performances throughout the Pacific (a tradition we continued with the Pacific tour of Ain’t Misbehavin’ during the 1990 season).
In 1952, at long last Honolulu Community Theatre found a home to call its own. It took up permanent residence at Ruger Theatre, Fort Ruger army base’s aging movie house. Although never designed for stage productions, the 1930s war-era movie house was retrofitted to the extent it could be. A scene shop and costume center were added. Installation of lighting and sound systems were made. A first-ever lobby for our patrons opened and an upstairs addition for office space, spotlights and lighting boards.
In 1990, a new name for an old friend was given. Honolulu Community Theatre became Diamond Head Theatre. Today DHT is being rebuilt as a true live theatre center. Community support is needed for the ongoing capital campaign and construction.
The Footlights formed as a small collective of passionate performers and local luminaries. Its first production was The Amazons.
The performance troupe’s growing popularity led to reorganization as Honolulu Community Theatre with shows at venues such as what’s now known as Hilton Hawaiian Village.
The theatre group established its permanent home at Ruger Theatre, a war-era military base movie house on Oahu’s iconic Diamond Head.