Mississippi's 10 Best Live Theater Venues!

Live theater is an art form unlike any other. It brings the audience into the story with the actors, creating an intimate experience that brings a play to life. Mississippi has a rich cultural history, and these are the best places in the state to see live theater.

1. Hattiesburg Saenger Theater, Hattiesburg, MS

The Saenger Theater in Hattiesburg is one of seven theaters built by the Saenger brothers in the early 20th century, and is one of the few movie palaces that still remains in the state. This magnificent theater opened on Thanksgiving Day in 1929, and still boasts many of its original details, including the chandeliers and a rare original Robert Morton pipe organ.

2. Temple Theater, Meridian, MS

The Temple Theater was built in 1928, and at the time featured the second-largest stage in the United States. It is the only theater in Mississippi besides the Hattiesburg Saenger to feature a Robert Morton pipe organ. Visiting this grand building is like taking a trip back in time to the glamorous days of the silent film era, and it will be an experience you'll never forget.

3. Mary C. O'Keefe Cultural Center of Arts & Education, Ocean Springs, MS

The O'Keefe family has a long history of being involved with the arts on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. The Mary C., as it's affectionately nicknamed, is located in a beautiful old public school in Ocean Springs that was built in 1927. There are 11 rooms filled with art, including the auditorium. Live shows are put on throughout the year.

4. Parkside Playhouse, Vicksburg, MS

The Parkside Playhouse in Vicksburg is one of the newer entries on our list, but its occupants are anything but new to the theater scene. The Vicksburg Theatre Guild has been staging live theatre for over 80 years, and are renowned for their creative and colorful performances. 

5. The Riley Center, Meridian, MS

The Riley Center, which is owned by Mississippi State University, is also known as the Grand Opera House. It, along with many of the other historical theaters in the state, is on the National Register of Historic Places. It was built in 1889, and was renovated in 2006 to restore much of its original beauty. This is one of the most magnificent buildings in the state and is worth a trip to Meridian.

6. Thalia Mara Hall, Jackson, MS

Thalia Mara Hall was originally named the Jackson Municipal Auditorium when it was built in 1968, but it was renamed to honor Miss Thalia Mara, a world-famous ballerina who brought the International Ballet Competition to Jackson in 1979. Today, the theater is a venue for ballets, plays, and other special events.

7. Ethel Holden Brownstone Center for the Arts, Poplarville, MS

Pearl River Community College built the Ethel Holden Brownstone Center for the Arts in 2011, seeking to build a state-of-the-art home for their fine arts program. The center has been a great success for the campus, and they have recently expanded their number of offerings during the arts season.

8. Roxy Theatre, Newton, MS

The Roxy Theatre was built as a movie theatre, as were many of the other entries on this list. It operated as such from 1934 until 1978. Since 1994, it has been the home to the Newton Theatre Company and is used as the venue for their productions, which include children's productions and dinner theatre. In 2013, a courtyard and new dressing rooms were added.

9. Natchez Little Theatre, Natchez, MS

Natchez Little Theatre has been entertaining since 1932 and is the most active volunteer community theater troupe in the United States. Performances range from the dramatic to children's theater. They stage 13 productions a year, with 115 performances, so you have plenty of chances to join the audience. 

10. Biloxi Saenger Theatre, Biloxi, MS

The Biloxi Saenger opened just a few short months after the Hattiesburg Saenger, and rivalled the first. It had more seats—1,500 as opposed to just under 1,000—and has been in constant operation since being built, even after going through a fire, Hurricane Camille, Hurricane Katrina, and an untold number of smaller hurricanes and tropical storms.

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303 Fulton Drive, Corinth, MS
Our History: Corinth Theatre-Arts has grown to be one of the most outstanding community theatres in Mississippi in only 40+ short years. When it w... Read More
351 University Avenue, University, MS
Mission Statement : The Gertrude Castellow Ford Center for the Performing Arts shall enrich the intellectual and cultural environment of the Univer... Read More
2103 Main Street, Madison, MS
About Us: The Center Players Community Theatre is a non-profit organization that provides affordable entertainment; unites people from all walks o... Read More
101 Iowa Avenue, Vicksburg, MS
As the oldest chartered community theatre in Mississippi, the Vicksburg Theatre Guild has offered live theatre for over seventy-five years, first o... Read More
319 Linton Avenue, Natchez, MS
About the Theatre : Natchez Little Theatre is a non-profit organization. Natchez Little Theatre has been entertaining Natchez and the Miss-Lou s... Read More
1100 Carlisle Street, Jackson, MS
About Us :  New Stage Theatre was chartered as a nonprofit organization in 1965 and produced its initial season in the winter and spring of 1966. ... Read More
507 Market Street, Port Gibson, MS
About Us Mississippi Cultural Crossroads is the local arts agency for Port Gibson and Claiborne County, Mississippi. We base our artistic program... Read More
103 Black Street, Brandon, MS
Mission: Mission is to add value for families by promoting live theatre in the local community and you are invited to join us.About Us: The Black... Read More
6061 McComb Holmesville Road, McComb, MS
Mississippi Playhouses was founded back in 2005. We built our first playhouse for our own grandchildren. After seeing how much fun and enjoyment th... Read More
1003 West Sunflower Road, Cleveland, MS
Mission Statement The Bologna Performing Arts Center at Delta State University brings together artists and audiences to celebrate the arts, to enri... Read More
220 Lee Street, Biloxi, MS
History: In 1946 in answer to an expressed need for a live theatre performing arts group in Biloxi, MS, actress Jane Wood Pringle with a handful o... Read More
108 East Main Street, Starkville, MS
About Us: Here at the Playhouse, all throughout the year one can play a role in Starkville Community Theatre's many activities, productions, partie... Read More
201 North Broadway, Tupelo, MS
The Vision: TCT—the Model for volunteer theatreThe Mission: To stimulate, promote, teach, and develop interest in the dramatic arts. Read More
4560 Venture Drive, Southaven, MS
Mission Statement:DeSoto Family theatre DFT seeks to provide entertainment appropriate for the entire family while offering opportunities for parti... Read More
2600 13th Avenue, Gulfport, MS
Gulfport Little Theatre is a non-profit community theatre founded in 1948 to foster and develop -- through productions, theatrical workshops, ... Read More
1907 Eden Street, Pascagoula, MS
Robin has been in business for 26 years. She has an associates of arts degree from Mississippi gulf coast community college. She has travelled to n... Read More
707 Sycamore Avenue, Greenwood, MS
Mission: Greenwood Little Theatre entertains and enriches the lives of residents in the Mississippi Delta by providing an outlet for creative tale... Read More
4334 Mississippi 39 North, Meridian, MS
The Meridian Little Theatre, one of the South’s oldest subscription-based community theatres, was founded in 1932, when its first production ... Read More
2670 Rue Palafox, Biloxi, MS
Mission:Center Stage Theatre is a non-profit organization whose mission is to enrich and enhance the lives of people living along the Gulf Coast an... Read More
201 Forrest Street, Hattiesburg, MS
History : As a crown jewel of Hattiesburg and part of the Saenger Amusement Company, the 1000-seat movie palace was one of 7 Saenger Theatres buil... Read More
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