The Players Ring provides the Seacoast with an intimate and distinctive performance experience by cultivating artistic creativity and freedom and by engaging audiences with unique and exciting theatrical opportunities.
The Ring is located in the Puddle Dock section of Portsmouth, next to Strawbery Banke, and is part of Prescott Park. The area is steeped in history, which the Ring maintains in its upkeep of its 1833 facility.
In 1992, Gary and Barbara Newton founded the Players’ Ring, which quickly established itself as a center for the production of new and original plays by regional artists. It also provided perfect opportunities for actors, directors and technical staff to develop and hone their craft in a nurturing and intimate performance space.
The Ring has maintained the commitment made by the Newtons for thirty years, and is now expanding their mission by offering even more opportunities for the regional creative community to experience artistic freedom and mentorship.
Seven years after its founding, Gary Newton wrote this about the Ring. It resonates today:
"For those of you coming into the theatre, we hope to set a standard that others will have to try and meet. Our goal is Our Art. Theatre can not be done without the spirit and commitment of ensemble. None of us want to play an empty house. That is not because we need to get our patron's money... not here. It is because the audience is a living ingredient of what we do. There are four basic parts to the Theatre: The Play, The Space, The Actor and The Audience. There is no theatre without all four. We seek to gain an audience by doing all that we can to communicate through the Art. Our very best effort is all that we will ever offer our audience. Believe it or not, they know this."
The Players’ Ring occupies a nineteenth century brick building on Marcy Street on the grounds of Prescott Park in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. The historic building is owned by the City of Portsmouth and is fitted out as a “black box” theatre. With a seating capacity of 75, The Players’ Ring annual attendance exceeds 7,000.