The American Historical Theatre (AHT) has presented many wonderful programs since its inception. The following are brief samplings of past programs that may inspire you with ideas that can be interpreted into a special program for your organization.
“Just Ask George” One-hour live broadcast; “The Crossing” with Jeff Daniels, national promotional tour; “Mr. Dreyfus Goes To Washington” with Richard Dreyfus.
“George Washington: Man & Myth” Full-length feature.
Historical Society of Pennsylvania
The American Historical Theatre produced a special program for HSP to enhance their permanent exhibit. We created twenty-one generic characters by combining the personal attributes and exploits of actual people from Pennsylvania history. We wrote original scripts, provided casting and training for actors, scheduled the performances, created historically accurate costuming, and supervised the performance run.
Smithsonian Institution: Museum of American History
AHT was commissioned by the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC to develop a performance piece about Alice Paul, early 20th century suffragist and writer of the Equal Rights Amendment. This performance has since been presented to more than fifty organizations, including the Alice Paul Institute.
Volunteers of America
AHT was called upon to re-create Maud and Ballington Booth and other officers of the Volunteers of America for the centennial celebration of the organization, presented at The Academy of Music in Philadelphia and Cooper Union in New York City.
50-State Bicentennial Bill of Rights Tour
A massive 50-state tour was staged to honor the Bicentennial of the Bill of Rights. AHT developed an eighteenth century program featuring fifteen of the signers of the Constitution to interpret this magnificent traveling exhibit which included an actual copy of the Bill of Rights!
Journey To the Presidency – Commission for the US Constitution
The Celebration of Washington’s Journey to the Presidency from Mount Vernon to New York City featured William Sommerfield as George Washington. The tour, developed by former U.S. Chief Justice Warren Berger, was restaged in its entirety, stopping in all of the towns on Washington’s original journey. Over forty individual events were celebrated, culminating in a re-enactment of the first inauguration in front of 32,000 guests, including then President George Bush.
The Time Travelers: Pennsylvania Avenue Development Corporation
For eight years AHT produced a program featuring many of the most colorful figures in American history to interact with tourists and residents in the nation’s capital. The program featured both scripted performances and spontaneous meet and greet interaction. These wandering historical characters, all of whom had visited the Federal City, were known as the Time Travelers. George Washington, Abraham and Robert Todd Lincoln, Alice Roosevelt, Sojourner Truth, Benjamin Banneker, Dolley Madison, Frederick Douglass, Mark Twain and the Town Cryer.
The Tryal of George Washington
Franklin and Jefferson journeyed to London, England as witnesses at George Washington’s mock “tryal” for treason in a four hour marathon subsequently edited by the BBC into a one-hour television docudrama. The trial, at historic Lincolns Inn, featured well-known judges and lawyers from both sides of the Atlantic. The three AHT interpreters were prepared for the trial by six distinguished U.S. lawyers, but had no written script. This BBC feature has been shown in England and in America on PBS. The Tryal of George Washington was followed and reported back to the United States each day by a traveling correspondent from ABC Nightly News.
The Constitutional Experience
This special nine-week summer series, was originally presented at historic Headhouse Square, Philadelphia. A second summer season at the Philadelphia Bourse Building was sponsored by the National Constitution Center. Three programs a day were performed for visitors to the historic district. This groundbreaking series was authored, produced, and directed by The American Historical Theatre.
The Real Benjamin Franklin (Discovery Channel)
The Real Benjamin Franklin was produced by Argentine Productions for the Discovery Channel. The American Historical Theatre provided casting and costuming. This film is currently shown by the National Park Service at Franklin’s Museum between Pine & Market Street..
US Airways Inaugural Flight from Philadelphia to Paris, France
The American Historical Theatre sent historical interpreters to Paris in 1991. Dr. Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson were both former Ambassadors to France. AHT and US Airways teamed up to bring these American statesmen back to Paris where they interacted with French officials, once again acting as Ambassadors for our great nation.
The Royal Pickwickians: Victorian Music Hall
A resident unit of The American Historical Theatre, The Royal Pickwickians, present an annual Victorian Music Hall reminiscent of the Golden Age. These 19th century evenings in glamorous costume feature endless laughs, naughty ballads and plenty of opportunities for the audience to heckle the Chairman and sing along.
Yankee Doodle Puppet Show
In order to provide educational entertainment for all ages, in 1997 AHT developed a puppet show based on the old Punch and Judy pattern. Yankee Doodle battles King George III of England in the War for Independence. This 20-minute show, that appeals as much to babes in arms as to their grandparents, has been performed for three summers outdoors at Independence National Park, at the Betsy Ross House, Elfreth’s Alley, the Baltimore Book Festival, Morgan Log House, and other historic sites.