Paula Vogel's BARD AT THE GATE Announces 2021-2022 and 2022-2023 Seasons

A total of eight plays will be digitally produced and streamed in the 2021-22 and 2022-23 seasons. 

By: May. 20, 2021

Paula Vogel's BARD AT THE GATE Announces 2021-2022 and 2022-2023 Seasons

BARD AT THE GATE will return for an additional two seasons starting this fall when Paula Vogel's virtual start-up partners with McCarter Theatre Center, it has been announced by Ms. Vogel and Sarah Rasmussen, Artistic Director of the McCarter Theatre Center. Plays by Zakiyyah Alexander (HOW TO RAISE A FREEMAN), Jose Rivera (SONNETS FOR AN OLD CENTURY) and Christina Anderson (GOOD GOODS) will be featured during the 2021-22 season. A total of eight plays will be digitally produced and streamed in the 2021-22 and 2022-23 seasons.

The newly-formed collaboration will be celebrated with a repeat airing of Eisa Davis's play BULRUSHER on Thursday, June 3 at 8 p.m. followed by a Q&A with Ms. Davis, Ms. Vogel and Valerie Curtis-Newton, Artistic Director for The Hansberry Project. The Vimeo stream will be available through June 9. For reservations to stream and to register for the Q&A, visit or (Donations suggested; to benefit future productions of BARD AT THE GATE.)

Directed by Eisa Davis, the cast of BULRUSHER includes Andre Holland (MOONLIGHT, JITNEY on Broadway), Kara Young (HALFWAY BITCHES GO STRAIGHT TO HEAVEN), Tanis Parenteau (BILLIONS, DESIGNATED SURVIVOR), Sydney Elisabeth (NYU Grad Acting program), Edmund Donovan (LEWISTON/CLARKSTON) and Corey Stoll (House of Cards). Jhanaë Bonnick is Stage Manager and Sue Slagle (2020 Creative Capital Awardee) is the video artist.

Ms. Vogel undertook BARD AT THE GATE when theaters shut down, recognizing the opportunity to fill the void with some of the overlooked and underappreciated plays - in particular by BIPOC, women, LGBTQIA+ and disabled writers - she had become familiar with in her role as one of the country's preeminent teachers of playwriting.

The four plays presented as readings by BARD in 2020 drew audience members in excess of 11,000 and - while not open for review - earned considerable media attention and kudos from viewers. BULRUSHER, in fact, appeared on New York Magazine's APPROVAL MATRIX, and New York Stage's Best of 2020 list.

While BARD AT THE GATE's mission to contribute to a new standard of works produced by American theaters remains in place, the series has grown: it is now co-curated by Paula Vogel, the Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright, and Nicole A. Watson, Associate Artistic Director for McCarter Theater Center.

An Advisory Council of playwrights, directors, producers and academics has been created for BARD play-selection: Isabella Starr LaBlanc, Jill Dolan, Joy Meads, KJ Sanchez, May Adrales, Pirronne Yousefzadeh, Quiara Hudes, Regina Victor, Valerie Curtis-Newton, Brian Herrera, Chay Yew and Gregg Mozgala.

Previously funded solely by Paula Vogel, BARD AT THE GATE now receives dedicated financial support under McCarter's "Vogel Vanguards," which currently include Roz and Jerry Meyer, the Sallie B. Goodman Fund, Daryl Roth, Elizabeth Armstrong, and Larry Hirschhorn and Melissa Posen.

BARD AT THE GATE's Board members are Eisa Davis, Brian Herrera, Grant Rice, Sam Rudy, Rosey Strub, Paula Vogel and Chay Yew. Paula Vogel is Founder and Co-curator; Nicole A. Watson is Co-curator; Rosey Strub is Producer; Ryan Pointer and BJ Evans are Associate Producers.

Sarah Rasmussen is McCarter Theatre's Artistic Director; Debbie Bisno is Resident Producer.

About McCarter's eagerness to partner with BARD AT THE GATE, Ms. Rasmussen says, "For so long, theater has peered through an 'only if it's a premiere' or 'only if it's proven' lens. With BARD, we are discovering stunning plays and giving them new life, as well as breaking down barriers of who has access."

She adds, "This past year we have learned so much about making and sharing virtual theater. Our ADRIENNE KENNEDY FESTIVAL brought so many to her work for the first time. Accessibility is a priority at McCarter that BARD AT THE GATE directly addresses."

Ms. Vogel states, "BARD began as a very personal effort to give marginalized playwrights a voice, especially during the historic times we are living through. Partnering with McCarter will give BARD a national impact with brilliant plays that belong in the curriculum and in the seasons of theatres worldwide. I am grateful to everyone who likewise sees this vital opportunity to redefine what we consider to be the best American plays."

Paula Vogel is the author of the plays HOW I LEARNED TO DRIVE (Pulitzer Prize), INDECENT (Best Play Tony Award nominee), THE BALTIMORE WALTZ, THE LONG CHRISTMAS RIDE HOME and many others. She has taught playwriting at Brown and Yale and is the creator of the popular Bake Off playwriting series. In praise of BARD AT THE GATE, David Gordon of Theatermania wrote in April 2021, "Paula Vogel is a visionary."

Nicole A. Watson created the acclaimed ADRIENNE KENNEDY FESTIVAL for the McCarter Theatre Center and Round House Theatre, where she was an Associate Artistic Director, a position she now holds with McCarter. For Round House, she directed A DOLL'S HOUSE PART 2 and THE AFRICAN MEAN GIRLS PLAY.


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