Design History of The Playbill

The yellow-and-black color scheme of The Playbill is familiar to theater fans, but since the publication’s founding in the 1930s—its way paved by many years of predecessors—it has enjoyed a readily adaptable identity.

Adaptive logos

The yellow header banner came into play in the late 1950s, creating a flexible format in which a black-and-white photo and theater name associated with a headlining production made a bold monthly statement. Over time, the design has begun to accommodate additional information, including especially iconic shows and important events, mostly through color alterations, without seriously altering the magazine’s identity.

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