1942 This Is the Army, Irving Berlin's sequel to his World War I-era hit Yip, Yip, Yaphank, opens on Broadway at the Broadway Theatre. Featuring a cast of 300 soldiers, the revue includes Berlin himself singing his hit song "Oh, How I Hate to Get Up in the Morning." Proceeds from ticket sales are used to benefit the Army Emergency Relief Fund, leading Kate Smith to reportedly send a check for $10,000 to pay for her two $27.50 opening-night tickets.
1965 The Long Wharf Theatre opens its doors today for the first time in New Haven, Connecticut. The premiere production is a new staging of Arthur Miller's witch trial tale, The Crucible. Written at the height of McCarthyism, Miller's play depicted a Massachusetts town that falls under siege to lies and betrayal when several teenage girls appear to have been bewitched. Miller's play drew subtle parallels between Salem and 1950s anti Communist hysteria.
1970 The first season of Summer Shakespeare in Monmouth, Maine starts today. Produced by "The Theatre at Monmouth," the festival includes productions of Twelfth Night, Romeo and Juliet, and Christopher Fry's The Lady's Not For Burning.
1999 Celebrating its 40-year anniversary as a theatre group, the San Francisco Mime Troupe present Division Street, a musical about the urban housing crisis, starting today in parks across the San Fran area. The Troupe was founded in 1959 by R.G. Davis, and in 1987 won the Regional Theater Tony Award, for sustained excellence.
2001 TV star Tom Selleck makes his Broadway debut with the first preview of a revival of Herb Gardner's A Thousand Clowns.
More of Today's Birthdays: Pat Rooney 1880. Irving Caesar 1895. Philip Rose 1921. Tracy Letts 1965.