Located on about 130 acres of national park land in Fairfax County, Va., is Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts. The concept for a theater in the park began as a donation from Catherine Filene Shouse, who wanted to preserve a former farm from encroaching roads and suburbs.
In 1966, Congress accepted Shouse's gift and authorized Wolf Trap Farm Park, its original name, as the first national park for the performing arts. On Aug. 21, 2002, the park's name was changed to its current one, keeping the area's historical significance and reflecting its mission to create and present excellent, innovative performing arts programs.
Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts organizes and operates several distinct venues and facilities, including the Filene Center. The Filene Center is a major indoor and outdoor performance venue with about 4,000 seats under a copper roof system that look out to tall trees and the park. The remainder of the seating is uncovered on a sloping lawn, where patrons can enjoy picnics while listening to performances nightly from May to September in a range of musical styles from opera to country.
Preparing to perform