is a not-for-profit regional theater
based in Southwest Washington, D.C.
Its declared mission<blockquote>"is to produce huge plays of all that is passionate, exuberant, profound, deep and dangerous in the American spirit. Arena has broad shoulders and a capacity to produce anything from vast epics to charged dramas to robust musicals. Our focus is on theater of the Americas; we produce American classics, premieres of new plays and contemporary stories. Our Arena is a forum, a coliseum, a place for audiences to argue, discuss and meet each other over the theatrical divide. At the center is art; all other programs thrive in concentric circles supporting the art." In the 60 years since its formation, its productions have received numerous local and national awards, including the Tony Award for best regional theater.
The theatre company was founded in 1950. Its first home was the Hippodrome Theatre, a former movie house. In 1956, the company moved into the gymnasium of the old Heurich Brewery
in Foggy Bottom
, which was demolished to make way for the Theodore Roosevelt Bridge
and the Kennedy Center
. In 1960, they moved into their current location. The theater company's home is on the Washington, D.C. waterfront, at 1101 Sixth Street, SW.
One of the founders, Zelda Fichandler
, was its artistic director from its founding through the 1990/91 season. Douglas C. Wager succeeded her for the 1991/92... Read More