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Fells Point Corner Theatre - A History

Fells Point Theatre brought community theatre to the Fells Point area opening at 814 South Broadway (at the corner of Shakespeare & Broadway) in 1970 through the inspired efforts of theatre lover Al Tyler. In November 1985, Fells Point Theatre left its original home, but always with the goal to stay in Fells Point. In the summer of 1986, Fells Point Theatre opened its 4th year Baltimore Playwrights Festival production in the National Polish Alliance Hall on Eastern Avenue, presenting Rabbit Test by Maryland playwright, Michael Wright, directed by Steve Goldklang.

March of the Falsettos (1987-88)

Fool for Love (1987-88)

In October 1986, the Fells Point and Corner Theatres, in a joint venture, produced The Killing Of Sister George by Frank Marcus and directed by Steve Goldklang, and brought our two theaters together to boast of a rich 35 year combined experience in Baltimore's theater community. Also in 1986, FPCT began negotiations with Mr. James Grant of the Baltimore City's Department of Recreation to find a new home, which culminated in our unique partnership.

The Scarlet Letter (1995-96)

Four Dogs and a Bone (1996-97)

In January of 1987, The Corner Theatre formally merged with the Fells Point Theatre to create FELLS POINT/CORNER THEATRE (the 'slash' was eliminated just a year later), with the initiative of wonderful people from both theaters: Bruce Godfrey, Chuck Kandalis, Beverly Sokal, Michael Schlotthauer, Mark Campion, Doris and Donald Sweet, Marty McDonough, Robert Bowie, John Bruce Johnson, Anne B. Mulligan and Barry Feinstein. Over the years, many others have joined the fold and continue to inspire our artistic and educational programs.

Dusting Belgrade (2000)

Turn of the Screw (2005-06)

With the help of city leaders, Mayor Clarence "Du" Burns, the Mayor's Advisory Council on Arts and Culture, Herbert Haar, Administrative Officer of the Neighborhood Project Administration and others, we established ourselves in an 1850 firehouse at 251 S. Ann Street. FPCT quickly carved out a dynamic theatrical space on the second floor and completed the construction of the rehearsal and conference space on the third floor. FPCT later developed a second, handicapped accessible theatre on the ground floor complete with a sparkling lobby and art gallery providing yet another opportunity for both traditional and cutting edge theatre in Baltimore. In April 2008, the city sold the building to FPCT, establishing FPCT with a permanent home.

Our Historic Home

The members of Engine Co. No. 5 pose in front of the firehouse (1914)

Our historic home dates back to 1849 when it was built to house the Columbian Fire Company No. 9, at a cost of $23,314, including the land. The bell for the firehouse weighed over 1,500 lbs. In 1893, as the bells were removed from firehouses around the city, the bell from our building was relocated to the Methodist Protestant Church at the corner of Lombard and Chester Streets.

When the city fire department was formed in 1859, Engine Company No. 5 was placed into service at the building on May 1st of that year. It received a new steam engine, the “Thomas Swann”, one of only 6 built by the firm Murray & Hazelhurst. This engine would not last long in the service of Engine Co. No. 3, as they received a new Poole & Hunt engine in 1868.

Twelve years later, on January 1st, 1871, Hook & Ladder Company No. 3 was formed and placed into service at the firehouse along with Engine Co. No. 5. Originally intended to be a temporary arrangement, it lasted nearly a century until both companies relocated to new quarters on Eastern Ave.

On April 13th, 1964, Engine Co. No. 5, Ladder Co. No. 3, and Ambulance No. 10 relocated from 251 S. Ann St. to new quarters at 2120 Eastern Ave. The Fire Department used the building as storage until 1971, at which point it became a city rec center.

Ladder No. 3 on display across Ann St. (1920)

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