The Kennedy Center hosts its 16th annual Page-to-Stage New Play Festival on Saturday, September 2 through Monday, September 4, 2017, featuring more than 60 theaters from the D.C. metropolitan area, all with a mission to produce and support new work. This year’s Page-to-Stage is a part of the Kennedy Center’s Centennial Celebration of President John F. Kennedy’s 100th birthday, which occurred on May 29, 2017. Page-to-Stage puts an emphasis on Courage, one of the five ideals ascribed to President Kennedy. The brave theaters and artists participating in Page-to-Stage present open rehearsals, concert readings, and workshops of new plays that are often still in the development phase. Elements of courage are consistent in the content of many of the works, tackling issues such as self-exploration, rebelling against the popular opinion, and overcoming adversity. Audience members may choose to engage in courageous behavior by taking the stage themselves through participatory activities such as cold readings from participants’ plays in Script Karaoke, and singing songs in Kostume Karaoke. Furthermore, patrons are encouraged to partake in post-presentation discussions with the artists about pressing topics of today that impact them, shaping the future productions of the playwrights’ work.
Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company is one of many theaters whose participation in Page-to-Stage exemplifies courage. “It takes courage to stand up for justice, especially when everyone around you thinks the status quo is fair. #poolparty is about the history of swimming pools, the desegregation of a neighborhood pool, and the legacy of racism in the water today,” says Jennifer Mendenhall, director of #poolparty, a work that will be presented by the company at Page-to-Stage. “I am so moved by the stories of people who take a stand, often at great personal cost, to ensure that all of us are treated with fairness and protected from hatred. I am grateful to Woolly Mammoth for sponsoring me, as one of their long time company members, at Page-to-Stage. That vote of confidence and support, and the opportunity to tell this story and listen to an audience’s response, is all I could ask for.”
As the living memorial to John F. Kennedy, the Kennedy Center’s vision is to engage artists and audiences around the world to share, inspire, and celebrate culture. “The Kennedy Center believes that the arts are one of humanity’s most eloquent means of making sense of the world. We love hosting the many theater companies from across the region to share their compelling stories and to capture audience’s imagination. We are proud of this event and look forward to a season of success for all involved,” said Robert van Leer, Senior Vice President of Artistic Planning.
The Festival’s free performances reflect the dynamic make up of all corners of the city, whether you are a newcomer or a veteran to theater. The varied participants include Theater Alliance of Washington, D.C., African-American Collective Theater, Mosaic Theater Company of D.C., and interactive performances by dog & pony dc, Arts on the Horizon, and Naked Theatre Company. The Kennedy Center is excited for the return of Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company and welcomes Ford’s Theater in their first Page-to-Stage New Play Festival.
A list of participating theaters appears on the following pages. For the schedule, please visit the festival website..
Page-to-Stage is FREE and open to the public. No tickets required. Seating is on a first-come, first-served basis. Seating is limited and subject to availability. Doors open 30 minutes prior to the start of each performance. There is no free parking for free events.
Need a Lift?
The free Kennedy Center Shuttle, the Center’s link to Metro’s Foggy Bottom/George Washington University/Kennedy Center Metro station (blue/orange/silver lines), departs every 15 minutes from 9:45 a.m. to 11:30 p.m., Monday – Thursday; 10 a.m. to midnight, Fridays and Saturdays; noon to 11 p.m., Sundays; and 4 p.m. to 11 p.m. on Federal holidays. Free parking is not available when attending free events.
Page-to-Stage is made possible by Share Fund.
For more information, please visit the Kennedy Center website.