In 1951 the Rice Dramatic Club (founded 1921) reorganizes as the Rice Players. Although Rice has no theatre classes and no theatre space, students produce popular productions outdoors until Hamman Hall's stage opens in 1958. Willard Thorpe, a visiting instructor in American Studies from Princeton University, helps the students put on their early productions. In 1964 Neil "Sandy" Havens arrives as full-time director and oversees the Players until he retires in 1999. In 1965 Rice incorporates the Players in its new Fine Arts Department and offers theatre courses in 1966-1967.

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Student performances, 1950s
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