Actress, Kalita Humphreys is best known through her namesake, the Frank Lloyd Wright designed Kalita Humphreys Theater in Dallas, TX.
Kalita Humphreys, a native of Liberty, Texas, made her Dallas debut in 1935 after being graduated from Vassar where she had studied theater arts under the direction of Hallie Flanagan Davis. She worked in Dallas with Charles Meredith and the Dallas Little Theater and as the director of the Dallas Federal Theater Project, and in Galveston Little Theater in Galveston, Texas.
Miss Humphreys worked in professional summer stock at the Westchester Playhouse at Mt. Kisco, New York, and the following winter did work at the St. Felix Street Theater in Brooklyn. She played the ingénue lead in Marc Connelly‘s Broadway production of Everywhere I Roam, after which she went to Europe for a short time and then returned to the United States and joined the Barter Theater of Virginia.
Back on Broadway as understudy to Eve Arden in Let's Face It, she took over the lead role on ten minutes notice and went on to play the role for the remainder of the Broadway run, a year and a half.
As regional representative for the American National Theater Association in the Southwest, Miss Humphreys visited most of the outstanding universities, colleges, and professional theaters in that region and one of these visits led her to appear as guest star in Paul Baker‘s Southwest Summer Theater production of The Barretts of Wimpole Street, staged at Baylor University. While she was working on this production she met Joe Burson and later that year they married and moved to Liberty, Texas, where they continued their interest in theater in addition to ranching. They both lost their lives in the crash of a private plane in Pennsylvania in 1954, while on a flight to New York.
Bio from Avoiding Founder‘s Syndrome in Arts Organizations: Studies of Successful Succession Transitions in Three Established Regional Theatres - by Debra Justice, M.F.A. - A Dissertation In Fine Arts
Texas Tech University, December 2010.
Used with permission.
Joseph Kline Burson
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