(816) 784-5020 3051 Central in Penn Valley Park Kansas City, MO 64141
Just off Broadway Theatre 3051 Central in Penn Valley Park P.O. Box 411653 Kansas City, MO 64141
Part of our mission is to provide a high quality, low cost location for small, sometimes struggling groups to produce their shows/events and showcase their skills. We are a 501 (c) 3 company and depend on the support of our community. Please consider making a donation.
In 1910, a park district structure was built in the southeast part of Penn Valley Park and used as an office, stables and storage barn. Noted Kansas City architectural firm Root and Siemens designed it and limestone quarried within the park was used in its construction. The building was very attractive and a bit unusual for its intended purpose. A short newspaper article in March 1910 called it “A Bit of Old England in Penn Valley”.
After years of active service, by 1990 the building was used only for storage. A fire in 1991 largely destroyed the structure. The Director of Kansas City Parks and Recreation at that time, Terry Dopson, conceived the idea of incorporating the part of the building that was still standing into a theater. He met with local theater companies with the goal of having those companies manage the theater. Using insurance money and volunteer help, the Park Department built a “black box” theater inside the still-standing limestone walls and “Just Off Broadway” opened in 2000 as the only black box theatre in the city and the only theatre of any type with its own stonewalls and grassy courtyard.
The theatre operated for ten years with unisex dressing rooms, a crowded lobby and concessions being sold inside the theatre. Approximately forty companies produced more than 1000 performances of 180 shows during that period. TIFF funds from the Federal Reserve Bank construction were allocated in 2009 with the help of MainCor, a development corporation for the 31st and Main business community, for completion of the theatre. The Just Off Broadway Theatre Completion Project included an enlarged lobby, box office and concession facilities, Equity Standard dressing rooms, increased storage/work areas, producer’s office and a multi-purpose space called the Penn Valley Room.
Construction began in January 2011 and was completed August 1, 2011. The theatre reopened on September 12, 2011 with Journeyman Theatre’s production of “Generation Why”-a rock operetta.
The Just Off Broadway Theatre Association is the steward of the Just Off Broadway Theater for the KCMO Department of Parks and Recreation for their goal of providing support for performing arts companies in metropolitan Kansas City.
PENN VALLEY PARK OPERATIONS BUILDING / JUST OFF BROADWAY THEATRE