The primary Stages Off-Broadway Oral history Project

Celebrating the visionaries who created New York's vibrant Off- and Off-Off-Broadway theater.

Dorothy Olim

Dorothy Olim

Producer, General Manager, Operating Officer of ATPAM, K/O Management, Inc., K/O Advertising, Inc.
Born on Saturday, October 14, 1933

Interviewed on: Friday, December 19, 2014
Location: Her Home
Interviewed by: Casey Childs
Interview #22
"You have to want to be in the theatre under any circumstances."
Dorothy Olim Highlights
Video Length: 6 Minutes, 30 Seconds
Dorothy Olim Interview
Video Length: 1 Hour, 36 Minutes

Dorothy Olim has been a producer and a general manager for over 100 Off-Broadway and Broadway productions. Her first endeavor was as an associate producer of THE FANTASTICKS (1960), followed by five productions Off-Broadway, including the revival of THE GOLDEN APPLE (1962). Beginning in 1962, she was the General Manager for A WHISPER IN GOD’S EAR (1962) with Gerald S. Krone. They soon became partners as Krone-Olim Management, Inc. and eventually added Krone-Olim Advertising, Inc. They focused on managing Off-Broadway shows. They general managed HAPPY ENDING and DAY OF ABSENCE (1965), AMERICA HURRAH (1966), FORTUNE AND MEN’S EYES (1967), and MACBIRD! (1967). By herself, Olim went on to general manage THE RIVER NIGER (1972), WOMEN BEHIND BARS (1975), THE FIRST BREEZE OF SUMMER (1975), and POPPIE NONGENA (1983). THE RIVER NIGER, THE FIRST BREEZE OF SUMMER, and POPPIE NONGENA all won OBIE awards, and THE RIVER NIGER also went onto Broadway and won a 1974 Tony Award. YOUR OWN THING was awarded the 1967 Citation for Best Musical by the New York Drama Critics’ Circle, the first time an Off-Broadway musical received the award.

Olim began her theatre career wanting to become an actress but was advised by her teachers to choose a different position in the theatre. In 1956, with two friends, she opened The Saranac Lake Summer Theater and was its producer for five years. Then, in 1960, Sheldon Baron convinced her to become a producer of THE FANTASTICKS. Afterwards, Olim and Krone created Krone-Olim Advertising, Inc. due to a need for advertising agencies for Off-Broadway theatres; it was one of the first managing companies of its kind. Olim is a member of the League of Professional Theatre Women and was on its board for ten years. She was also the Secretary-Treasurer (Operating Officer) of the Association of Theatrical Press Agents and Managers. She was Manager of Theater Four, an Off-Broadway venue, for 15 years, served as Secretary-Treasurer of the League of Off-Broadway Theatres and Producers, was President of the League of Advertising Agencies, and is the co-creator of Better Wellness and You (BWAY), an organization that promoted health fairs for the entire entertainment industry.

Mentioned in Interview

Krone-Olim Management, Inc., Krone-Olim Advertising, Inc., The League of Off-Broadway Theatres and Producers, Association of Theatrical Press Agents and Managers, The Negro Ensemble Company, Orpheum Theatre, Sullivan Street Playhouse, The Colonnades, Theatre Four, Manhattan Theatre Club, FORTUNE AND MEN’S EYES, THE BOYS IN THE BAND, FATHER’S DAY, PIMPERNEL!, MACBIRD!, HAPPY ENDING/DAY OF ABSENCE, YOUR OWN THING, THE FANTASTICKS