The Charles Playhouse, of Boston, Massachusetts, is a theater at 74 Warrenton Street in the Boston Theater District. Blue Man Group and Shear Madness currently perform there.HistoryIn 1957, the Charles Playhouse opened at 54 Charles Street. In 1958, the company moved to the current Warrenton Street location. The Warrenton Street building was originally built in 1839, as the Fifth Universalist Church from a design by architect Asher Benjamin. In 1864, it became the second home of Congregation Ohabei Shalom, the first synagogue in Boston. It was later transformed into a speakeasy called The Lido Venice, which became the Southland ballroom and cafe- featuring prominent jazz artists such as Count Basie, Duke Ellington, Cab Calloway, Jimmie Lunceford, and many others during the Jazz Age.In 1958, the Charles Playhouse staged a revival of O'Neill's The Iceman Cometh. The founding artistic director, Michael Murray, led the company until 1968. The founder and managing director was Frank Sugrue. The acting company included many stars-to-be such as Al Pacino, Olympia Dukakis, Jill Clayburgh, Jane Alexander, Ned Beatty, and John Cazale. The company produced Boston premieres of plays by Brecht, Beckett, Osborne, and Ionesco, as well as classics by Shakespeare, Shaw, Ibsen, Pirandello, and others.