Founded in 1974, L.A. Theatre Works is committed to producing cutting edge work in theatre and radio. We also work to expand access to the arts through extensive community outreach and the use of new technologies.
In the 1970's and 1980's, our work focused first on theatre residencies in prison settings and then on extensive, award-winning professional productions. These included world, American and West Coast premieres by Steven Berkoff, Jon Robin Baitz, Peter Handke, John Patrick Shanley, Timberlake Wertenbaker and John Steppling.
LA. Theatre Works began producing radio drama in 1987. Our Audio Theatre Collection now includes over 250 classic and contemporary plays: the largest library of audio theatre in the country. The Collection includes work by Arthur Miller, Jon Robin Baitz, George Bernard Shaw, Joyce Carol Oates, Jose Rivera, Paula Vogel and David Henry Hwang performed by such actors as Richard Dreyfuss, Julie Harris. Nathan Lane, James Earl Jones, Amy Irving, Hector Elizondo, Kelsey Grammer, Marsha Mason, Walter Matthau, Jason Robards, Annette Bening, Judith Ivey and Paul Winfield.
Our production values set the standard for this medium. We are the recipients of the 1999 Audio Award for Theatrical Production, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting's Gold Award for the Spoken Word and Silver Award for Technical Production, several International Sony Awards, several New York Festivals Awards and a Writers Guild of America Award.
We currently produce audio plays both in the studio and before live audiences in Los Angeles and Washington, DC. The plays are then broadcast locally, nationally and internationally for several million listeners every year in collaboration with National Public Radio, the Voice of America, the BBC and many other broadcasters worldwide. Our productions then become available on audiocassette through our own catalogue and in bookstores and libraries everywhere.
Our national education and access program, ALIVE & ALOUD: Radio Plays for Learning in the Classroom, makes the Audio Theatre Collection accessible to thousands of public secondary school students and teachers. Participating schools across the country receive, at no cost, our high quality audio recordings accompanied by imaginative curriculum study guides to help teachers use audio theatre as a tool for learning in the classroom.
Our acclaimed, 15 year-old local outreach program, ARTS & CHILDREN, serves up to 3,000 at-risk youngsters every year--over 40,000 since its inception. We recruit some of L.A.'s best artists for residencies in the literary, performing and visual arts, reaching incarcerated youngsters throughout Los Angeles County as well as youth-at-risk in their communities. These workshops help reclaim the lives of troubled kids by introducing them to hands-on experiences with the arts and emphasizing their ability to play a positive role in society.
L.A. Theatre Works is a member of Theatre Communications Group, Theatre LA. and the Audio Publishers Association and is supported by the National Endowment for the Arts, California Arts Council, L.A. County Arts Commission, City of Los Angeles Cultural Affairs Department and many private foundations, corporations and individuals.