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The Story of Us

About Us

Established in 1985.

Muskegon Civic Theatre is a voluntary organization providing exceptional community based theatrical experiences by and for adults and children of all backgrounds. This is accomplished through a variety of diverse productions and educational opportunities in all elements of theater in Muskegon and West Michigan communities.

MCT is a consolidation of the former Civic Opera AssociationPort City Playhouse and Muskegon Youth Theatre. The combined history of these theatre groups has spanned decades of service in the greater Muskegon area. Our predecessors include the Little Theatre of Muskegon and the Greater Muskegon Civic Theatre in addition to our named parent organizations. We are governed by a Board of Directors, and we operate under an approved set of Bylaws, policies and procedures.


Muskegon Civic Theatre is the only community theatre in Muskegon County.

Our organization utilizes volunteers in all aspects of the performing arts. During the course of a production season, we utilize the contributions of up to 350 volunteers, which equates to approximately 30,000 hours of volunteer time. For every actor that you see on stage, there are numerous technicians behind the scenes supporting them!

We are always seeking people who want to experience the joy of community theatre. Please feel free to visit our volunteer page or call: (231)722.3852

Our History

Community theatre in Muskegon – a Heritage of 85 Years! Muskegon Civic Theatre, since 1985 and still going strong!

  • 1935-1940

    Little Theatre of Muskegon

  • 1950-1958

    Greater Muskegon Civic Theatre

    In August 1950, a church building on Sanford Street was purchased by the Greater Muskegon Civic Theatre and became the home for its productions.

  • 1951-1983

    Civic Opera Association

    Civic Opera Association was founded in 1961, when it opened with a production of Gilbert and Sullivan’s “The Mikado,” COA concentrated on musicals, most of them expansive. The company performed in a variety of venues, including the Central Campus auditorium at Muskegon High School and the Michigan theater which would become the Frauenthal.

  • 1961-1983

    Port City Playhouse

    Port City Playhouse got rolling in 1961 in an old church building (the former Greater Muskegon Civic Theatre) on Sanford Street, across the street from where the Muskegon High School Big Reds play football at Hackley Stadium. Starting with a production of playwright Noel Coward’s ghostly comedy of manners, “Blithe Spirit,” Port City Playhouse operated until 1983.

  • 1981-1984

    Muskegon Youth Theatre

    Established by Janet Smith as a division of Civic Opera Association

  • 1985 and Still Going Strong!

    Muskegon Civic Theatre

    Formed in 1985, MCT is a merger of three former Muskegon entities: Port City Playhouse, Civic Opera Association and Muskegon Youth Theater.  MCT’s inaugural show was “The Man Who Came to Dinner,”


Each of these organizations has brought its own heritage and talent to many area stages and to many community audiences over the years. They have improved and contributed to the quality of life in Muskegon.

April 1985, marked the beginning of a new era for community theatre in Muskegon. The merger of Civic Opera Association, Port City Playhouse, and Muskegon Youth Theater produced a stronger, more viable theatre organization, Muskegon Civic Theatre.

MCT’s inaugural production was The Man Who Came to Dinner by Moss Hart and George S. Kaufman, presented on the Frauenthal Theater Stage. Our large musical productions continue to appear on the Frauenthal stage, our smaller productions appear in the Beardsley Theater, and in January 2010, we introduced a black box theater setting.

Muskegon Civic Theatre is a registered 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization, is governed by a Board of Directors and operates under an approved set of Bylaws, policies, and procedures.



MCT Show History

Most of MCT’s shows are performed at the Beardsley Theater MCT’s largest productions and Black Box productions are mounted inside the
Frauenthal Theater itself.

Port City Playhouse & Civic Opera Association Show History

These productions either took place at Port City Playhouse (now the MCT Scene Shop), at Muskegon High School, or at the Frauenthal Theater.

Theatre Staff

Muskegon Civic Theatre is the only full-time, non-profit, community theater organization in Muskegon, Oceana, and Ottawa counties with local support and resident participation. We are always looking for people who want to experience the joy of community theatre!

Trent Klairter

Artistic and Technical Director

Erin Sharpe

Administrator of Education and Community Engagement 

Theatre Board

Amy White








Jennifer Ross

Vice President







Shirley Wyatt








Joel Selby








Claire Root Benson

Past President

Bob Scolnik

Board Member

Melissa Brown

Board Member

Michael Ramsey

Board Member







Brandon Davis

Board Member

Laurel Barnett

Board Member

LeighAnn Mikesell

Board Member

Michael Hekker

Board Member

Rachel Gorman

Board Member