Company History

Third Rail Repertory Theatre was born in 2003 from a desire to deliver artistic excellence to Portland audiences on a consistent basis. Like the Group Theatre of the 1930s and Chicago’s Steppenwolf Theatre, Third Rail’s permanent ensemble shares an esthetic, a vocabulary, and an understanding of each other’s working styles. This means that great risks can be taken quickly, and thus great dramatic (and comic) potential is tapped. The result for theatergoers is productions that are surprising, thought-provoking, and above all, consistently entertaining.

The artists of Third Rail are professionals. They have worked as actors, directors, and designers at all levels of American theatre from summer stock to Broadway—and as teachers in outreach programs and in higher education. The company’s ties to Portland are deep and strong. Many members were born here, and their involvement with Portland theatre spans decades.

The mission of Third Rail Repertory Theatre is to provide a dynamic artistic home for theatre audiences in Portland by fostering a professional local company, which, through collaboration and discipline, brings to life exceptional stories that provoke dialogue, encourage empathy, and inspire curiosity.