Number “1” Plays and Players’, Bay Area Harbour Playhouse, was formed August 8, 1980 and immediately named Bennie Nipper as its Artistic Director. Under her leadership it has grown from a company performing for NASA employees at the Gilruth Center to its present site opened in 1991 as a community theatre and Fine Arts Academy.
Bennie received an Associate in Arts (AA) degree from Lon Morris College, a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) and a Masters in Education (M.Ed.) in Theatre Arts from The University of Texas at Austin. She has performed and directed at the Austin Civic Theatre (now the Zachary Scot Theatre) in Austin, The Circle Players in Indianapolis, the original Alley Theatre on Berry Street in Houston, The Pasadena Little Theatre, The Clear Creek Country Theatre, The College of the Mainland Arena theatre and The San Jacinto College-South Theatre.
Bennie composes music and has had her works recorded by Rainbow Records. She also writes plays and poetry. In 1995, to help celebrate Friendswood Centennial, she wrote, produced and directed The Promise Land, a musical based on the history of that community. Some of her poetry has been published by the World of Poetry and the American Poetry Association. In 1989, Bennie was named “Poet Laureate” of the World of Poetry and received its highest cash award of $15,000.
A Distinguished Alumnus of Lon Morris College, Bennie retired from teaching theatre arts in public high schools, where her students and University Interscholastic League productions won many awards. She has served on the Board of Directors of the Texas Non-Profit Theatres and is a member of the American Association of Community Theatres. Bennie is pursuing her lifetime dream in community theatre with the establishment of The Bay Area Harbour Playhouse.