Howlround Theater Commons Home Page

Welcome to HowlRound

A man sits in front of a group of people who are raising their hands

Devised Work Convening, Washington DC, 19-20 February 2010.

We’re a free and open platform

for theatremakers worldwide.

We amplify progressive, disruptive ideas about theatre and facilitate connection between diverse practitioners. We function as a  “commons”—a social structure that invites open participation around shared values. All of the content (essays, videos, podcasts) on HowlRound comes from the theatre community who chooses to participate—that means you!

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What's New

Terror, Strength, Pain, Brilliance, and Children in Four Little Girls
Essay

Terror, Strength, Pain, Brilliance, and Children in Four Little Girls

21 February 2019

Alex Ates examines the recent production of Christina Ham’s Four Little Girls at the Alabama Shakespeare Festival.

two people look at each other intensely
Put Some Latinx Representation in Your Puta Syllabus
Essay

Put Some Latinx Representation in Your Puta Syllabus

20 February 2019

Andres Osorio reflects on the fact that as a student of playwriting, he was never once assigned a play by a Latinx writer.

performer holding a cloth above her head
Learning from and Listening to Latinx Youth at the 2019 LTC TYA Sin Fronteras Festival and Convening
Essay

Learning from and Listening to Latinx Youth at the 2019 LTC TYA Sin Fronteras Festival and Convening

19 February 2019

Marci R. McMahon reports on the 2019 Latinx Theatre Commons Theatre for Young Audiences Festival and Convening, which took place in January 2019 in Austin, Texas. 

Upcoming Events

Livestreaming Panel: The Future of Crowdfunding for Theatre Artists of Color
Video

Livestreaming Panel: The Future of Crowdfunding for Theatre Artists of Color

An online conference hosted by Advancing Arts Forward

Friday 1 March 2019
Video Conference

Advancing Arts Forward and HowlRound Theatre Commons present the panel The Future of Crowdfunding for Theatre Artists of Color livestreaming on the global, commons-based peer produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv on Friday 1 March at 11:30 a.m. PST (San Francisco) / 1:30 p.m. CST (Chicago) / 2:30 p.m. EST (New York) / 7:30 p.m. UTC +0 (London).

Suzan-Lori Parks portrait
Livestreaming Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work from The Public Theater, New York
Video

Livestreaming Suzan-Lori Parks' Watch Me Work from The Public Theater, New York

A playwriting masterclass

Monday 4 March 2019
The Public Theater, New York City

Watch Me Work is a play with an action and dialogue — it’s also a meta-theatrical, free writing class! Come join us. Livestreamed on the global, commons-based peer produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv on Monday 4 March 2019 at 2 p.m. PST (Vancouver) / 4 p.m. CST (Chicago) / 5 p.m. EST (Montréal) / 22:00 UTC +0 (London).

Performers on the set of 50 Shades of Gay
Livestreaming Performance of 55 Shades of Gay: Balkan Spring of Sexual Revolution by Qendra Multimedia (Kosovo)
Video

Livestreaming Performance of 55 Shades of Gay: Balkan Spring of Sexual Revolution by Qendra Multimedia (Kosovo)

Presented by La MaMa Experimental Theatre Club

Sunday 10 March 2019
New York City

La MaMa Experimental Theatre Club in New York City presents a performance of 55 Shades of Gay: Balkan Spring of Sexual Revolution by Qendra Multimedia (Kosovo) livestreaming on the global, commons-based peer produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv Sunday 10 March 2019 at 12 p.m. PST (Los Angeles) / 3 p.m. EST (New York) / 19:00 UTC +0 (London) / 20:00 UTC +1 (Berlin). 

Community Picks

Lists of specially curated content by members of our community.

Ten Great Articles from Past Guests on the Theatre History Podcast

Here are ten articles on theatrical history, theory, and practice from guests on Howlround's Theatre History Podcast.

Diversifying the Classical Canon
Essay

Diversifying the Classical Canon

2 April 2016

Scholar and translator Barbara Fuchs discusses the opportunities and challenges of diversifying the classical canon to include Spanish-language Hispanic classical theatre.

Old Institutions, New Plays
Essay

Old Institutions, New Plays

What The O’Neill Model Can Teach Us

1 June 2014

Anne G. Morgan sheds insight on the history and impact of the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center on the theatrical community. 

Decolonizing Theatre/La Descolonización del Teatro
Essay

Decolonizing Theatre/La Descolonización del Teatro

an Introduction/Introducción

27 May 2018

Annalisa Dias and Madeline Sayet introduce the Decolonizing Theatre series by exploring the ways the American theatre has been and still is complicit in the legacy of colonialism.

Why I’m Breaking Up with Aristotle
Essay

Why I’m Breaking Up with Aristotle

22 April 2016

Chantal Bilodeau on writing ourselves out of the pyramid and why she is breaking up with Aristotle.

A Game at Chess
Essay

A Game at Chess

The Most Controversial Play You’ve Never Heard Of

10 August 2017

Following the controversy around the Public’s Shakespeare in the Park Julius Caesar production, Nora Williams provides a parallel story about a play that was censored and caused the Globe to be shut down in 1624 because it depicted living monarchs unfavorably.

History Repeats Itself
Essay

History Repeats Itself

Hallie Flanagan in the Twenty-first Century

4 October 2016

Amy Brady interviews Michael Arve about Dangerous Theatre, a piece he’s directing based on Hallie Flanagan’s 1938 testimony to the Special Committee to Investigate Un-American Activities.

The Legacy of Luis Valdez and El Teatro Campesino
Essay

The Legacy of Luis Valdez and El Teatro Campesino

The First Fifty Years / El Legado de Luis Valdez y El Teatro Campesino: Los Primeros Cincuenta Años

5 December 2015

Dr. Jorge Huerta reflects on the birth, present, and enduring legacy of El Teatro Campesino on its fiftieth anniversary.

Portrait of Kyle A. Thomas.
A PhD in Theater
Essay

A PhD in Theater

Working in Theory to Work in Practice

18 December 2013

Kyle A. Thomas offers a reflective overview of his concerns around pursuing a PhD in theatre.

Homer’s Trojan War on Boston Stages
Essay

Homer’s Trojan War on Boston Stages

4 August 2013

Kyna Hamill investigates the implications of addressing war on stage and shares a brief overview of Theatre of War.

Immersive and Interactive Performance
Essay

Immersive and Interactive Performance

A Rasic Experience

6 March 2015

Scholar and theater practitioner Erin Mee, considers how by giving time-space to the sensoria, immersive, and interactive productions are inherently rasic.

Series

State of Black Theatre

This series explores the current state of Black theatre and its role in the American theatre landscape.

The Roster
Essay

The Roster

Black theatres in America

16 March 2013

A list of black theatres in the United States, complied by Michael Dinwiddie, Jonathan McCrory, Beth Turner, Lawrence Evans, and the New England Entertainment Digest.

The cast and crew of a play gathered around their set.
Working at It
Essay

Working at It

16 March 2013

Ben Guillory writes about The Robey Theatre Company, and the importance of outreach and bringing audiences to black history.

Five women in period dress.
Indomitable Spirit
Essay

Indomitable Spirit

The Legacy, Vitality, and Sustainability of Black Theatre Today

16 March 2013

Eileen J. Morris discusses the duty The Ensemble Theatre has to the community of Huston.

Logo for the Black Theatre Network.
The Black Theatre Network
Essay

The Black Theatre Network

Past, Present & Future

15 March 2013

Michael Dinwiddie discusses the role of the Black Theatre Network in the community.

A poem by Barbara Ann Teer.
The Way Back Home
Essay

The Way Back Home

15 March 2013

Sade Lythcott writes about her mother's legacy as founder of the National Black Theater (NBT), and the importance of maintaining the history and lineage of black theater.

What Shall We Tell Our Young Playwrights Who Are Black?
Essay

What Shall We Tell Our Young Playwrights Who Are Black?

14 March 2013

A meditation on the importance of uplifting young black playwrights. 

Several people pose for a picture.
Interview with Ron Simons
Essay

Interview with Ron Simons

13 March 2013

A group of independent producers meet with Broadway producer Ron Simons. Simons discusses the need to invest in black theatre on Broadway.

Two people reading scripts.
Who We Are
Essay

Who We Are

Black Theatre in the Bay Area

12 March 2013

Edris Cooper-Anifowoshe discusses the climate of black theatre in San Francisco.

An man plays the piano in Ma Rainey's Black Bottom.
Keeping the Flame
Essay

Keeping the Flame

12 March 2013

Sarah Bellamy reflects on Penumbra Theatre Company's financial situation, and provides a roadmap of their goals, challenges, and approach to fundraising.

A still from Fathers And Sons.
Emerging from the Crucible
Essay

Emerging from the Crucible

11 March 2013

Valerie Curtis-Newton writes about her experience at The Hansberry project, and the neccessity of producing black artists.

Several people pose for a picture.
The Tradition of Defining a Tradition
Essay

The Tradition of Defining a Tradition

11 March 2013

For the State of Black Theatre Series, Talvin Wilks looks at the history of black theatre telling its own story.

Self Advocacy and Social Change Within College Campuses

A collection of articles focused on social change, self advocacy, and their relation to theatre in an educational setting.

Art in a Complex World
Essay

Art in a Complex World

In Sweet Remembrance at Sweet Briar College

8 January 2015

Geoffrey Kershner, AD of the resident theatre company at Sweet Briar College, considers the complicated intersection of art and our racial history and the responsibility of the artist.

Not In Our Schools
Essay

Not In Our Schools

Creating Self-Advocating Artists Starts in the Classroom

26 February 2018

Elizabeth Horn reflects on how in the aftermath of #MeToo, it is more important than ever to teach the next generation of theatremakers ideas of consent, respect, and how to advocate for themselves as artists.

Breaking Away from the Institution
Essay

Breaking Away from the Institution

How to Take Control of Your Education

5 September 2018

Theatre student Abigail Warhus talks about feeling stuck at university and taking her education into her own hands.

Windy City Midwifery
Essay

Windy City Midwifery

Birthing the New Musical in Chicago

18 August 2015

Aaron Hunt on new musical development in Chicago, Illinois.

Little Lemon
Essay

Little Lemon

A Case for Reimagining the University Season

15 December 2013

Ezra LeBank reimagines how theatres at universites should interact with their audiences. 

Discussion of Political Correctness in Comedy at Emerson College in Boston—Friday 13 November 2015
Video

Discussion of Political Correctness in Comedy at Emerson College in Boston—Friday 13 November 2015

Emerson College presented the panel discussion Comedy and Campus Culture livestreamed on the global, commons-based peer produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv on Friday 13 November at 11 a.m. PST (Los Angeles) / 1 p.m. CST (Chicago) / 2 p.m. EST (Boston) / 7 p.m. GMT (London) / 8 p.m. CET (Amsterdam). Submit your questions for the panel via email to comedy@emerson.edu. In Twitter, Follow @ECSoArts@HowlRoundTV, and use hashtag #howlround.

The Shifting Landscape of Theatre for Young Audiences
Essay

The Shifting Landscape of Theatre for Young Audiences

Searching for (and Creating) New Maps

27 January 2013

Kim Peter Kovac on the changing landscape of Theater for Young Audiences, and the opportunities that presents. 

Ensemble of Shakespearean Jazz Show.
Creating The Shakespearean Jazz Show at Emerson
Essay

Creating The Shakespearean Jazz Show at Emerson

27 November 2012

Alex Ates reflects on the creation of The Shakespearean Jazz Show, and how Emerson College provided the perfect opportunity for his brainchild to grow.

Dance the Vote
Essay

Dance the Vote

On Rapid Response, Performance, the Election, and Civic Engagement

11 October 2016

Artistic Director Joan Lipkin discusses the inspiration and process for “Dance the Vote,” a voting registration campaign in St. Louis, Missouri that included performances by local artists. 

It Starts in the Classroom
Essay

It Starts in the Classroom

Approaching Gender Parity through Actor Training

8 November 2017

What are female acting students learning in the classroom? Educator and director Katherine McGerr discusses how gender parity in theatre starts in the classroom.

Company of Teatro Luna.
Performance of Teatro Luna's Luna Unlaced, a choose-your-own-adventure play at Emerson College in Boston—Monday 28 October 2013
Video

Performance of Teatro Luna's Luna Unlaced, a choose-your-own-adventure play at Emerson College in Boston—Monday 28 October 2013

The Ladies of Teatro Luna—Chicago's All-Latina Theatre Company—invited you to participate in Luna Unlaced, a choose your own adventure play, performed at Emerson College in Boston and livestreamed on the global, commons-based peer-produced HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv on Monday 28 October 2013 at 5 p.m. PDT (San Francisco) / 7 p.m. CDT (Chicago) / 8 p.m. EDT (Boston).

Mea Culpa
Essay

Mea Culpa

24 May 2015

Matthew Gray offers support from the academic arena for HowlRound contributor Seth Lepore’s charge that university theatre departments are not readying the next generation of theatre artists.

Producing Connections at ArtsEmerson and Emerson College
Essay

Producing Connections at ArtsEmerson and Emerson College

19 March 2014

Meg Taintor shares insight on creating opportunities for college students to interact with professional theatremakers.

Three people stand on a stage. One kneels on the ground wearing horns, one poses while wearing a pink tutu and orange cape, and other looks out into the audience while wearing a cookie monster t-shirt.
Don't Call it Sweet
Essay

Don't Call it Sweet

11 March 2012

Sarah Coleman talks about the stigma of "sweetness" that surrounds TYA, and the idea that creating plays for children is no child's play.

Logo for Association of Writers and Writing Programs.
Diversifying Creative Writing Educational Programs with Playwriting
Essay

Diversifying Creative Writing Educational Programs with Playwriting

18 April 2014

The neglect of playwriting as a genre in what I’ll lovingly call the creative writing industrial machine—poetry, fiction, and non-fiction/memoir are the ruling three—hasn’t escaped conference organizers. They actively encourage pitches for playwriting panels, which are typically in short supply. This year, this poet and part-time playwriting instructor made a point of attending as many theater-related panels as possible. It was an incredibly heartening experience, mainly due to the emphasis placed on the benefits of incorporating playwriting into creative writing and literature classrooms.

Performance Colectiva at CAL
Essay

Performance Colectiva at CAL

Breaking The Berkeley Bubble, One Performance At A Time

9 June 2014

Theater for students of color is needed in the University: to speak about these issues and at the same time to break the “Berkeley Bubble” by showing that issues students study about in their classes—including, race, class and gender—have a real impact on campus life.

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