Women's Project Theater

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WP Theater (formerly known as Women's Project Theater) is a non-profit theater based in New York City. It is the nation’s oldest and largest theater company dedicated to developing, producing and promoting the work of female-identified theater artists at every stage in their careers. .[1]

Background[edit]

WP Theater (formerly known as Women's Project Theater) was founded in 1978 by Julia Miles, who was associate director at the The American Place Theatre, to address the conspicuous under-representation of women artists working in the American theater.[2] A survey at the time indicated that only 6% of plays produced in the United States were written by women.[3] Over three decades later, employment statistics for women playwrights and directors have improved, But women are still in a minority position. Even today, only 20% of opportunities in the professional theater nationwide are granted to women theater artists.

Women's Project Theater continues to combat gender bias with the simple act of making a home for extraordinary female-identified theater artists, presenting their work onstage, and advocating for them . A season at Women's Project Theater includes a three play 'Mainstage Season' season, 'WP Lab', and 'Annual Women of Achievement Awards Gala'.

Women's Project Theater has produced more than six hundred mainstage plays and developmental projects [4] including Crooked by Catherine Treischmann, Aliens with Extraordinary Skills by Saviana Stănescu and Virginia Woolf's only play, Freshwater, directed by Anne Bogart. Other productions include Or, by Liz Duffy Adams, Smudge by Rachel Axler, Lascivious Something by Sheila Callaghan, Apple Cove by Lynn Rosen,Milk Like Sugar by Kirsten Greenidge, How The World Began by Catherine Treischmann, Bethany by Laura Marks and Jackie by Elfriede Jelinek.

Women's Project Theater artist alumni include Anne Bogart, Ruby Dee, Eve Ensler, Kim Hunter, Lynn Nottage, Diane Paulus, Maggie Siff, Frances Sternhagen, Anna Deavere Smith, and Sarah Jessica Parker.[5][6]

The 'WP Lab' is the heart of Women's Project Theater's artistic programming, and the only program in the nation that fosters artistic collaboration between emerging and mid-career Playwrights, Directors and Producers.

Each year, Women’s Project Theater hosts the Women of Achievement Awards Gala Awards, which has honored Chita Rivera, Eve Ensler, Whoopi Goldberg, Estelle Parsons, Gloria Steinem, Vanessa Redgrave, and Laurie Anderson, amongst others.

Notable productions [4][edit]

Season Title Creative Team Location Notes
2005-2006 THE CATARACT By Lisa D’Amour, Directed by Katie Pearl Julia Miles Theater New York Premiere
2005-2006 JUMP/CUT By Neena Beber, Directed by Leigh Silverman Julia Miles Theater New York Premiere
2006-2007 GIRLS JUST WANNA HAVE FUND$ Conceived & created by the 2006-2008 WP Lab: May Adrales, Gia Forakis, Leigh Goldenberg, Christina Gorman, Maria Goyanes, Jyana Gregory, Karen Grenke, Katori Hall, Amy Kaissar Andrea Lepcio, Patricia McNamara Linda Powell, Molly Rice, Saviana Stanescu, Joy Tomasko & Kim Weild. World Financial Center World Premiere Co-presented by arts>World Financial Center
2006-2007 TRANSFIGURES Conceived & Directed by Lear deBessonet, Text by Bathsheba Doran, Charles Mee, Erin Sax Seymour, Russell Shorto, Joan of Arc & Henrik Ibsen, Choreographed by Andrea Haenggi Julia Miles Theater
2006-2007 VICTORIA MARTIN: MATH TEAM QUEEN By Kathryn Walat, Directed by Loretta Greco Julia Miles Theater World Premiere
2007-2008 CORPORATE CARNIVAL Conceived & Created by Megan E. Carter, Julie Crosby, Jyana S. Gregory & the Performers, Directed by Jyana S. Gregory, Text by Andy Paris World Financial Center World Premiere Co-presented by arts>World Financial Center
2007-2008 CROOKED By Catherine Trieschmann, Directed by Liz Diamond Julia Miles Theater American Premiere
2007-2008 SAND By Trista Baldwin, Directed by Daniella Topol Julia Miles Theater World Premiere
2008-2009 GLOBAL COOLING: THE WOMEN CHILL Conceived & created by the 2008-2010 WP Lab: Bekah Brunstetter, Alexis Clements, Charity Henson-Ballard, Kara Manning, Lynn Rosen, Crystal Skillman, Andrea Thome, Heidi Carlsen, Linsay Firman, Susanna Gellert, Wendy McClellan, Donya K. Washington Diane Alianiello, Heather Cohn, Jennifer Conley Darling, Aimee Davis, Amanda Feldman, Marissa Rosenblum & Allegra Schorr, Musical Direction by Matt Castle, Choreography by Elizabeth Montgomery, Visual Art Installation by Annie Boyden Varnot & Elizabeth Ferrer World Financial Center World Premiere Co-presented by arts>World Financial Center
2008-2009 FRESHWATER By Virginia Woolf, Directed by Anne Bogart Julia Miles Theater World Premiere Co-produced with SITI Company
2008-2009 ALIENS WITH EXTRAORDINARY SKILLS By Saviana Stanescu, Directed by Tea Alagic Julia Miles Theater World Premiere
2009-2010 LASCIVIOUS SOMETHING By Sheila Callaghan, Directed by Daniella Topol Julia Miles Theater World Premiere
2009-2010 SMUDGE By Rachel Axler, Directed by Pam MacKinnon Julia Miles Theater World Premiere
2009-2010 OR, By Liz Duffy Adams, Directed by Wendy McClellan Julia Miles Theater World Premiere
2010-2011 ROOM Based on the writings of Virginia Woolf, Directed by Anne Bogart, Adapted by Jocelyn Clarke Julia Miles Theater Starring Ellen Lauren
2010-2011 APPLE COVE By Lynn Rosen, Directed by Giovanna Sardelli Julia Miles Theater New York Premiere
2011-2012 WE PLAY FOR THE GODS Conceived & created by the 2010-2012 WP Lab: Charity Ballard, Alexandra Collier, Elizabeth R. English, Jessi D. Hill, Andrea Kuchlewska, Dominique Morisseau, Kristen Palmer, Sarah Rasmussen, Mia Rovegno, Melisa Tien, Nicole A. Watson, Stephanie Ybarra & Stefanie Zadravec Cherry Lane Theater
2011-2012 HOW THE WORLD BEGAN By Catherine Trieschmann, Directed by Daniella Topol Peter Jay Sharp Theater New York Premiere, Produced in association with South Coast Repertory, Recipient of a 2011 Edgerton Foundation New American Play Award.
2011-2012 MILK LIKE SUGAR By Kirsten Greenidge, Directed by Rebecca Taichman Peter Jay Sharp Theater Co-Produced by Playwrights Horizons & La Jolla Playhouse
2012-2013 COLLAPSE By Allison Moore, Directed by Jackson Gay New York City Center Stage II New York Premiere
2012-2013 JACKIE By Elfriede Jelinek, Directed by Tea Alagic, Translated by Gitta Honegger New York City Center Stage II North American Premiere, Starring Tina Benko
2012-2013 BETHANY By Laura Marks, Directed by Gaye Taylor Upchurch New York City Center Stage II Featuring America Ferrera

The Lab[edit]

The Lab is a two-year residency for women playwrights, directors and producers. Selected through a highly competitive process, the Lab provides its members with a vital professional network, entrepreneurial and leadership training, rehearsal space, and opportunities for the development and production of bold new work for the stage.

The Lab has two main goals: to cultivate the work of women theater artists and to give them the tools they need to succeed in the business. In addition to developing their own unique work, Lab artists collaboratively create a culminating residency production. Past shows include WE PLAY FOR THE GODS (2012), GLOBAL COOLING (2009), CORPORATE CARNIVAL (2008), and GIRLS JUST WANNA HAVE FUND$ (2007) and THE ARCHITECTURE OF BECOMING (2014).

Under the auspices of Women’s Project Theater, the 2008-2010 Lab Playwrights published OUT OF TIME AND PLACE, a two-volume anthology of plays, including contributions from 11 Lab Playwrights. With an introduction by Theresa Rebeck, the anthology has had great success especially in academic communities hungry for work by women that feature strong female roles.

Many Lab artists continue to work together long after their official residency ends, and the Women's Project Theater continues to advocate ferociously for its Lab alumnae by brokering agents, providing references, and submitting their work to theaters around the country. Women's Project Theater also hires many Lab artists for main stage productions; over 75% of plays produced at WP during the past five years were written and/or directed by Lab artists and alumnae.

Noteworthy Lab alumnae [7][8][9][edit]

Women of Achievement awards[edit]

Each year, Women’s Project Theater recognizes the extraordinary accomplishments of women from the worlds of entertainment, business and philanthropy at the Women of Achievement Awards Gala. Over the past 28 years, Women’s Project Theater has paid homage several women luminaries and, in 2014, recognized Sharon Bush, Arianna Huffington, and Joan Vail Thorne.[10]

Select recipients[edit]

[11]

Awards and accomplishments[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Mitchell, Angela. "Women's Theatre Groups". 
  2. ^ Greene, Alexis (February 2008). "What Women Want". American Theatre. 
  3. ^ Miller, Stuart (May 19, 2010). "An Artistic Director Who's All Business". The New York Times. 
  4. ^ a b Production History: http://wptheater.org/about/past-productions/
  5. ^ "Women's Project Theater Production History". American Theatre. 
  6. ^ "Women's Project Theater Artist Alum". 
  7. ^ "WP Lab Playwrights - Women's Project Theater". Retrieved 24 April 2017. 
  8. ^ "WP Lab Directors - Women's Project Theater". Retrieved 24 April 2017. 
  9. ^ "WP Lab Producers - Women's Project Theater". Retrieved 24 April 2017. 
  10. ^ "2014 Women of Achievement Awards - Women's Project Theater". Retrieved 24 April 2017. 
  11. ^ "Women of Achievement Honorees - Women's Project Theater". Retrieved 24 April 2017. 

External links[edit]