The Factory Theatre
Last month, the managers of the Factory Theatre were informed that their lease would not be renewed and that the theater would have to close at the end of October. The Factory Theatre serves as affordable space for small theater groups and currently hosts the resident companies Fresh Ink Theatre, Happy Medium Theatre Company, Science Fiction Theatre Company, Heart & Dagger Productions, Vagabond Theatre Group, Sleeping Weazel, Maiden Phoenix Theatre Company, Porpentine Players, and Wax Wings Productions.
The creative community has rallied against the theater’s closing, raising a unified voice against the decision of the owner’s decision not to renew the lease. The news attracted coverage in WBUR and the Globe, inspired Joyce Kulhawik to write an open letter to the owners, and sparked conversation on social media.
Our friends at StageSource wrote a thoughtful blogpost reflecting on what the loss of the Factory Theatre means for the theater community at-large:
But for the theater sector, and the art? The loss of The Factory Theatre is important. These small and fringe companies serve a number of roles. They operate on another level, and can take risks in their programming. They support new work, and playwrights. They provide access to artists at the beginning of their careers who are learning their crafts. They provide opportunities for mid-career actors interested in exploring directing or playwrighting. They provide theater artists with “day jobs” an opportunity to work avocationally in theater. They provide a home for a specific breed of theater artist. Not every theater artist dreams of “growing” beyond the small or fringe community. In fact, many of these artists thrive in this community. In the past ten years or so, the Boston theater community has come into its own, due in no small part to this part of our ecosystem.
Although the Factory Theatre's lease hasn't been renewed, it's not over! If you want to stay involved, follow Save the Factory Theatre and the ongoing conversations about the need for space among the groups in the theater community, including Boston Center for the Arts, StageSource, and Small Theatre Alliance of Boston.