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Rebecca Novick

Rebecca Novick is a theatremaker based in the San Francisco Bay Area. She is a director specializing in new plays and community-engaged projects and a seasoned arts leader with management experience at theaters of different sizes. An innovator and a founder she has a proven track record launching new companies and initiatives. She was the founding artistic director of Crowded Fire and led the company for ten years. She also served as associate artistic director at California Shakespeare Theater where she built a new community engagement department, catalyzing a shift in programming for the theater and diversifying its artists, partnerships, and audience. Recent directing projects include Electra for Ten Thousand Things in Minneapolis, Ghost Town, a world premiere by Juliette Carrillo, for Cornerstone Theater in Los Angeles, and Revolt. She Said. Revolt Again. by Alice Birch at Crowded Fire in San Francisco. She is currently developing Storybank for the Resistance, a set of projects using first-person stories to influence political decision-makers. Her directing has been recognized with the SF Bay Guardian’s Goldie Award for Outstanding Local Artists. Rebecca has also consulted for many foundations and arts non-profits. She served as the interim program officer for the arts at the SF Foundation and was a senior member of the staff at Theatre Bay Area. She frequently speaks and writes about issues confronting the field and is especially proud of her essay “Please Don’t Start a Theatre Company," which has been read and shared more than 30,000 times.

director in rehearsal with three actors
"I Only Do Work that Terrifies Me"
Essay

"I Only Do Work that Terrifies Me"

Rebecca Novick and Marissa Wolf in Conversation

11 November 2018

Director, dramaturg, and founding AD of Crowded Fire, Rebcca Novick, speaks with Marissa Wolf, the new AD of Portland Center Stage—and former AD of Crowded Fire as well—about knowing when you’re ready for change, leaving communities you’ve helped build, parenting in the arts, and more.

Several kidney beans lying around. Beneath them, the words "counting new beans: intrinsic impact and the value of art"
The Importance of Beginning
Essay

The Importance of Beginning

the Changing Relationship of Artists, Organizations, and Communities

8 March 2012

This excerpt from Counting New Beans: Intrinsic Impact and the Value of Art includes quotes from various theatre-leaders finding new ways and forms of audience connectivity.

Michael Rohd teaching in front of several people sitting in chairs.
Interview with Michael Rohd
Essay

Interview with Michael Rohd

8 March 2012

Rebecca Novick interviews Michael Rohd, founding artistic director of Sojourn Theatre, about audience engagement, measure of success, and how location informs art.

A brick building with a sign that reads "mixed blood."
Interview with Jack Rueler
Essay

Interview with Jack Rueler

6 March 2012

This interview is adapted from the version that appears in Counting New Beans: Intrinsic Impact and the Value of Art. Jack Reuler of Mixed Blood Theatre talks about the new metrics of measuring the impact of theatre.

A portrait of director diane paulus
Interview with Diane Paulus
Essay

Interview with Diane Paulus

5 March 2012

In this excerpt from Counting New Beans: Intrinsic Impact and the Value of Art, Rebecca Novick talks with Diane Paulus about programming, audience engagement, and the role of dialogue in a theatre's relationship with its patrons.

San Francisco
Essay

San Francisco

21 January 2012

Rebecca Novick examines San Francisco's complicated relationship with ambition—and why we should all embrace the idea of "investing" instead of "making it."