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Carroll Players

The Carroll Players is the first student theatre organization in the state of Wisconsin, established in 1898. The organization is open to all students on campus with a passion for theatre — on stage or off. The Carroll Players work closely with the Theatre and Arts Management program to put on a variety of shows, host workshops, trips and events for Carroll University students throughout the year. The organization is a great way for students to get involved in the theatre scene at Carroll for students who are not majoring or minoring in Theatre Arts.

The Carroll Players meet once a week at a time determined at the beginning of each semester.

Contact the Carroll Players to learn more about the organization at

History of the Carroll Players

On June 5, 1896, Carroll College students, under the direction of Professor May Nickell Rankin, performed Bulwer Lyton's "Richelieu" at the former Silurian Casino in Waukesha. The performance, part of Carroll’s Commencement celebration, marked the beginning of a rich heritage of campus and community theater, and established the Carroll Players as Wisconsin's first college and university theater fraternity. The Carroll Players, which have been active in theater production since that date, is today recognized as Wisconsin's oldest active theater organization.

The role of the Carroll Players has changed throughout the years - at times, it has been the primary theater performance group and at times, a social support group. Recently, great attention has been paid to this topic. It was decided that the name Carroll Players would identity both the theater productions group as well as a separate social organization. With the unification of Carroll Players as an overarching idea, there has been more opportunity for faculty and student cooperation and growth.

The unification of Carroll Players has allowed students to have more opportunities in the theatrical process, while still having a social group. Students now have the ability to be more involved in the design, directing and producing aspects of the theater season at Carroll. The social organization associated with Carroll Players has continued to search for its relation with the theater department and has settled on being a theater support group, which has weekly social meetings, attends shows, puts on minor productions, and does community service. With the enthusiasm of faculty and students at Carroll, the tradition of the Carroll Players will live on for years to come.

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