- City, State: San Francisco, CA
- Geographic Location: North America
Having just celebrated its 40th Anniversary Season, Magic Theatre is one of the most prominent theatres in the nation solely dedicated to development and production of new plays. The mission of Magic Theatre is to give voice to playwrights, both emerging and established, and to develop and promote the work of theatre artists. Magic Theatre engages audiences in intimate, professional productions that speak to contemporary issues with originality and wit, a sense of urgency and adventure. Founded by John Lion in 1967 at the Steppenwolf Bar in Berkeley, Magic Theatre’s history includes premieres of over 200 new works. The theatre’s name derives from the novel Steppenwolf by Herman Hesse, in which the central character is invited to attend an: "Anarchist Evening at the Magic Theatre For Madmen Only Price of Admission Your Mind." The roster of writers whose works have premiered at the Magic reads like a “Who’s Who of the American Theatre,” including Sam Shepard (playwright in residence 1975-83), David Mamet, Michael McClure, Nilo Cruz, Rebecca Gilman, Charles Mee, Anne Bogart, Neena Beber, John Robin Baitz, Edna O’Brien, Joseph Chaikin, Claire Chafee, John O’Keefe, Maria Irene Fornes, Michelle Carter, and Jose Rivera. Magic Theatre plays and playwrights have won four Pulitzer Prizes for Drama (Sam Shepard, David Mamet, Paula Vogel, Nilo Cruz) and ten Obie Awards (Off-Broadway, NY), including Best New Play for Fool for Love and Buried Child by Sam Shepard and Josephine the Mouse Singer by Michael McClure. This season Michelle Carter won her second PEN-West Award for Drama, for Ted Kaczynski Killed People with Bombs, having won two years earlier for Hillary and Soon-Yi Shop for Ties. Other awards include the Kennedy Center Award, numerous Bay Area Critics Circle Awards, the Los Angeles Drama-Logue Award, and the NAACP Image Award. Under the leadership of Artistic Director Loretta Greco, Magic Theatre is also instrumental in the development of works in the Bay Area and beyond, with itsMartha Heasley Cox Raw Play Series and education programs Young California Writers Project amongst others. Magic Theatre is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) arts organization, supported by ticket revenue, grants from local and national agencies, as well as hundreds of individual and corporate donors.
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