Homing Project, Step 1

Monday, February 1, 2010 Leave a Comment

What is The Homing Project?

There's been some good feedback to The Homing Project from Scott at Theatre Ideas, Guy at Culture Future, J at 99 Seats, and the potential of a convening in midsummer as part of the New Play Institute, led by Arena and David Dower. I've also received some support for the idea on Twitter at #newplay and via email (reach me at gus@fluxtheatre.org). So I'm trying to move this forward as best I can, taking it step by step.

The first step is an easy one - what artistic homes for playwrights are already out there?

I know that there are already strong traditions of artistic homes in the Indie Theatre and Ensemble Theatre movements, and a number of positive examples, some traced by Outrageous Fortune, at the larger institutions. I wouldn't be surprised if the 1/10th of the field, the 400 partners mentioned in the previous post, already exist.

So the first step is obviously to acknowledge the theatres and playwrights already doing this, and reach out to them to form an informal (for the time being) coalition.

What is the criteria for being considered an artistic home for a playwright? Well, I'm not interested in this being a purity test. What I do think is this artistic home should consist of either:

- A proven commitment to producing the playwright's work on a regular basis
- A similar level of resources provided to the playwright over time (like Arena's current 3 year residency program, which includes housing, health insurance, and more).

Development is very important, but for the purposes of this project, not enough. I'd like to think that the 20+ playwrights Flux develops on a weekly basis consider us a home; but for the purposes of this project, it's the sustained commitment to production that counts.

Also, I think ensembles that continually devise work, or companies where a director functions as the primary creative source of play creation, could also be included.

So PLEASE, post in the comments below any theatres you know of providing this kind of artistic home, along with the playwright, like so (I'll get the list started):

ARTISTIC HOMES
Nosedive Productions: James Comtois
Young Jean Lee's Theatre Company: Young Jean Lee
Ontological-Hysteric Theatre: Richard Foreman
The Vampire Cowboys: Qui Nguyen
Arena Stage: Karen Zacarias
Partial Comfort Productions: Chad Beckhim
Gideon productions: Mac Rogers
Working Man's Clothes: Bekah Brunstetter
Stolen Chair: Kiran Rikhye
Blue Coyote Theatre Company: Matthew Freeman
Bannana, Bag, and Bodice: Jason Craig
International WOW Company: Josh Fox
Maeutic Theatre Works: David Stallings
New York Neo-Futurists: The Ensemble
Packawallop Productions: Alejandro Morales
Rabbit Hole: Stanton Wood
Rising Phoenix Repertory: Crystal Skillman
The Amoralists: Derek Ahonen
Piper McKenzie: Jeff Lewonczyk
Disgraced Productions: Robert Attenweiler

20 names off the top of my head - 380 more from all of you, and we're on our way to a solid base for The Homing Project. So please, comment below w/other playwright/theatre matches, and if you're interested in getting involved further, email me at gus@fluxtheatre.org.

8 comments »

  • David Dower said:  

    Yes, the research is essential as step one. Let's dig in to it.

    Suzan-Lori Parks has a Master Playwright chair at The Public.

    In another model, Kirk Lynn is resident with his company The Rude Mechanicals in Austin, from which he's been able to build and sustain his playwrighting. This model is spreading in Austin.

    The Bay Area combination of Encore/Z Space/Shotgun has been underneath the work of Adam Bock, Peter Sinn Nacthrieb, Mark Jackson (who also self-produces), and probably more. Definitely a model of aligning resources around artists.

    Poke Chicago. There's going to be a whole raft of examples there but they may not find this conversation on their own.

    Poke Philadelphia. Michael Hollinger, Thomas Gibbons, and ensembles like RainPan43 and Pig Iron have sustained support there.

    Poke Boston. Ask Boston Playwrights to contribute what they know from that community-- Ronan Noone has had sustained support there, Lydia Diamond has some sort of residency with Huntington.

    Check with Paul Mullin in Seattle-- he's bound to know where there's evidence of this sort of informal residency of sustained commitment there.

    Did you have James Still on your list? There's a lot to learn from that arrangement, even if it's a long-distance relationship.

  • joshcon80 said:  

    Nosedive Productions- James Comtois
    The Management- Joshua Conkel
    Half Straddle- Tina Satter

  • Ian W. Hill said:  

    Gemini CollisionWorks - Ian W. Hill
    Untitled Theatre Co. #61 - Edward Einhorn
    DMTheatrics - Frank Cwiklik
    The Debate Society - Ensemble
    Clancy Productions - John Clancy
    Old Kent Road - Eric Bland
    Sneaky Snake - Richard Lovejoy
    Mountebanks - Trav S.D.
    Ten Directions - Audrey Crabtree & Lynn Berg
    Terrible Baby - Nick Jones & Rachel Shukert
    Bone Orchard - Anna Jones & Ensemble
    Lake Ivan Performance Group - David Finkelstein & Ensemble

  • RLewis said:  

    Peculiar Works Project - Barry Rowell, Catherine Porter, Ralph Lewis

  • August Schulenburg said:  

    This is great - thank you all for the help! Josh, I'm excited to hear you're open to adding a second playwright to The Management's roster - something I'd love to see Flux do, too.

  • August Schulenburg said:  

    Tim from Boomerang emailed me some additions:

    Oracle Theatre: Isaac Rathbone
    One Armed Man: Adam Klasfeld

    keep 'em coming!

  • August Schulenburg said:  

    Another from the email:

    Organs of State: Guy Yedwab and Ensemble

  • Johnna Adams said:  

    The Committee is Ken Urban's theater company. (http://www.thecommitteetheatre.blogspot.com/)

    STAGEStheatre in Fullerton, CA, supports several playwrights and playwriting groups to varying degrees. Bill Mittler, Joel Beers, Orange County Playwrights Alliance, Amanda DeMaio and Johnna Adams