Mannville Open Air Theatre

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The Mannville Open Air Theatre is an open-air theatre in St. George's Park, Port Elizabeth.

Popularly simply known as Mannville, and on occasion, wrongly written as Mannville Open-air Theatre in some sources.


Planned, built and run by the Port Elizabeth Shakespearean Festival, named after the founding members Helen Mann and Bruce Mann.

On 2 June 1971 the Parks and Recreation Committee considered a request from the Port Elizabeth Shakespearean Festival and resolved "That provision be made on the 1972 Estimates for an amount of R12,500 for the development of an open air theatre in St. George's Park".

The opening performance was on February 3, 1972, with the staging of A Midsummer Night's Dream. produced by Leslie French.

The inaugural performance was given under the patronage of Councillor Katie Gelvan and attended by John Hamber, Taubie Kushlick and Hilda Jamieson.

After the performance, the audience was entertained by the Mayor of Port Elizabeth, Councillor Solly Rubin at a champagne party when he named the new theatre "The Mannville Open Air Theatre".

The theatre comprises a staging area and grassed area and grassed tiers where seats are placed. It is utilised annually by the Port Elizabeth Shakespearian Festival but is available for hire for any items of an aesthetic or cultural nature.

For performances, see Port Elizabeth Shakespearean Festival


The Sound of Music theatre programme. 1972.

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