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Experience the Magic of Live Theater at Geffen Playhouse

Westwood Geffen Playhouse Theater

Geffen Playhouse Theater:
Where Classic and Contemporary Collide on the Los Angeles Stage


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Updated on May 17 2024 7:27am

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Discover the captivating world of the Geffen Playhouse Theater in Los Angeles.


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Since its establishment in 1995, Geffen Playhouse has solidified its position as a prominent fixture in the vibrant Los Angeles theater scene. Renowned for its intimate setting and a captivating blend of classic and contemporary productions, including groundbreaking world premieres, this not-for-profit organization continues to captivate audiences and earn national acclaim. Named in honor of entertainment mogul and philanthropist David Geffen, whose initial donation kick-started the theater, the company was founded by Gilbert Cates and is currently led by Executive Director Gil Cates, Jr. and Board Chair Adi Greenberg. With a proud affiliation with UCLA, Geffen Playhouse welcomes over 130,000 attendees annually and takes pride in its extensive education and community engagement programs, aimed at involving underserved young individuals and the wider community in the arts.

Steeped in history, the Geffen Playhouse Theater traces its roots back to 1929 when it was originally constructed as the Masonic Affiliates Club (MAC), catering to UCLA students and alumni. As one of the first twelve structures to grace Westwood Village, this architectural gem was designed by the renowned architect Stiles O. Clements.

As a not-for-profit theater, Geffen Playhouse is driven by its dedication to cultivating an appreciation for the arts and giving back to the community. The theater has successfully nurtured programs in collaboration with high school students and community education campaigns, fostering an environment of creativity and cultural growth. With two stages, Geffen Playhouse presents three to five plays each season, offering a diverse range of theatrical experiences.

Located in the heart of the Westwood neighborhood, Geffen Playhouse stands as a testament to the power of artistic expression. Its rich heritage is reflected in the courtyard fountain, which originated from Malibu Potteries. The intricate patterns adorning the fountain can also be found in the Adamson House, designed by Stiles O. Clements during the same period as the Geffen. This architectural continuity adds an extra layer of historical significance to the theater's ambiance.

The Geffen Playhouse enthralls audiences with its exceptional programming across two theaters—the Gil Cates Theater and the Audrey Skirball Kenis Theater. Alongside the regular season productions, the Playhouse also hosts special events, making it a vibrant cultural hub. Renowned actors from the realms of film and television have graced the Geffen stage, including names like Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Idina Menzel, Andy Garcia, Dulé Hill, and many more. These extraordinary performances have solidified the theater's reputation as a premier destination for exceptional live entertainment.

With its captivating productions, commitment to community engagement, and a rich history, the Geffen Playhouse Theater continues to captivate and inspire audiences, shaping the vibrant theater landscape of Los Angeles. Experience the magic of live theater at Geffen Playhouse and immerse yourself in the artistry that brings stories to life on stage.

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