Anacostia Arts Center Announces the Winners of the Resident Theatre Incubator


JUNE 2017

(Washington DC) Anacostia Arts Center is using its 2018 season to nurture the creation of new, innovative, and experimental work, to promote six outstanding theatre organizations and individuals. The Resident Theatre Incubation Project was created to increase the number of theatre companies and individuals producing high quality theatre at the Anacostia Arts Center. With over 30 applicants the Anacostia Arts Center panel narrowed it down to six companies who will fill each category of the incubation.

The levels of incubation were designed to ensure the theatre companies and individuals have support for new work and company growth:

Full Season Residency– This agreement allows theater companies to run their full season (up to three productions) in the Black Box Theatre with no rental cost. The company will receive $2000 per production to off-set production costs and 4 weeks in the performance space.

Full Production Presentation– This agreement allows theatre companies to run one production over a four-week period in the Black Box Theatre. The company will receive $2000 for this production.

Limited Engagement Presentation– Companies and individuals may present a limited engagement production in the Black Box Theatre. This engagement may be 1-3 days in length. The company will receive $500 – $1000 for this production.

Workshop Presentation– Companies and individuals may host a workshop presentation of new work in the Black Box Theatre. The company or individual will receive $500 to develop the piece and agrees to use the Anacostia Arts Center to fully house the world premiere of any fully produced performance of the new work.

About the winners:

Convergence Theatre Company – Full Season Residency

Convergence Theatre is a home for socially conscious artists who wish to spark dialogue between diverse communities through new theatrical structures. Convergence Theatre’s mission to give voice to the voiceless is essential to identifying the barriers to communication and rhetoric that favor the dominant culture. By engaging in an interdisciplinary approach to dramatic creation, Convergence Theatre produces multi-sensory performances that invite a wide audience base, encouraging discourse and dialogue over issues of social conscience.

The two proposed full productions, A New Nation and This is All Just Temporary, ask audiences to reflect on their own inclusivity of individuals who do not fit mainstream criteria, and how language and culture are central to discovering and embracing our intersections.

Theatre Prometheus – Full Production Presentation

Theatre Prometheus is a not-for-profit company of directors, designers, actors, writers, and other theatre artists based in Washington, D.C. Producing both classic and contemporary works, the company shares a goal of exploring and promoting women-focused, diverse narratives. Theatre Prometheus believes in the power of local theater and are committed to providing opportunities to local artists, creating productions both by and for the community.

Theatre Prometheus will produce Soldier Poet, a 90-minute play written by Darcy Parker Bruce, with Arabic translations by Esam Pasha. Synopsis: “In the falling city of Aleppo, two American Army Rangers rescue an injured Syrian woman about to give birth. At a nearby hospital, a neonatal nurse with an unwavering sense of duty struggles to save the lives of infants as her hospital is bombed.” The subject matter of the play speaks to a previously underserved demographic while also striking a deep chord as it relates to current events and concerns.

FRESHH Theatre Company– Limited Engagement Presentation

FRESHH has decided to celebrate novelist Octavia Butler through a play festival, The Next of Kin Black Women’s One Act Festival. This festival pays homage to Kindred by Octavia Butler and examines the lives and stories of Black women in 2218. The company will work with 3 playwrights to interpret Kindred by using one of the characters, one of the settings and/or the theme and create a one woman, one act 10-minute play. FRESHH is intentional on working with artists aged 19 – 90. Their commitment to this goal means they are hoping to work with playwrights, directors and actors across the spectrum of age and experience; particularly to increase the inclusion of elders and emerging artists on stage and in directing and playwriting.

The Tarot Reading– Limited Engagement Presentation

By combining the archetypes of the Tarot and radical vulnerability, The Tarot Reading empowers audience and artist to create and experience encounters that enable them to fulfill their need for true connection, explore their own humanity, and marvel at the powers of variety, synchronicity, and randomness.

The Tarot Reading is anchored in the archetypes of the Tarot. The show is intimate, interactive and interdisciplinary. At the door, 21 audience members are dealt a tarot card from the deck at random. For each card, a thematic microplay of 3-5 minutes is devised by one of seven performers to be performed for and with the cardholder in a sacred space while everyone else watches from afar. The Tarot Reading is ongoing and iterative, meaning each production features seven different performers and twenty-one original micro-plays.

Anacostia Musical Theatre Lab – Workshop Presentation

The Anacostia Musical Theatre Lab highlights the vital stories and experiences of the Anacostia neighborhood, through musical theatre pieces created by nearby residents, in collaboration with local writers, composers and musicians. The Lab aims to reflect the voices of the community and provide opportunities for underserved populations to use music as a means of storytelling, healing and hope. The Anacostia Musical Theatre Lab matches residents with local writers and musicians to develop and workshop two one-act musicals/or song cycles per season. The shows will feature co-writers and performers, from the Anacostia area.

Pocket ChangeWorkshop Presentation

Pocket Change creates pockets of creative change on a shoestring budget! Their production titled Chesapeakaboo is a devised children’s theatre piece. A fish and a fisherman need the audience’s help to save the Chesapeake Bay! Pumpkinseed and Peter become unlikely friends who learn simple ways to help the Bay, taught with interactive songs and dance. Kids and parents will leave this show with a better understanding of their impact on local water systems and the environment. The show presents easy, everyday actions that can improve the health of the Bay. This portable show will feature handmade puppets, simple props, and original songs and is appropriate for ages 5-7 years.

About Anacostia Arts Center

Anacostia Arts Center is a project of the ARCH Development Corporation, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to creating a home for small businesses, artists, arts and cultural organizations to fulfill its commitment to the revitalization and sustainable economic development of Historic Anacostia. The 9,300-square ft. arts center opened in June of 2013 and includes a café, the Black Box theatre, two boutiques, a physical therapy studio, an artist exchange and two art galleries.

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