Thank you to our donors!
We are so incredibly grateful to everyone who donated to Theater in Asylum’s 2023 Fundraiser over the past month. Together, we raised $11,578 for our 2023 season, which will go towards the world premiere production of The Nobodies Who Were Everybody (formerly known as The FTP Show), more Cold Readings, pay increases for our artists, and much, much more. We think this season is going to be our best yet thanks to you and your generosity. Thank you, thank you again!
Missed your chance to donate to the fundraiser but still want to contribute? Learn how to support Theater in Asylum at theaterinasylum.com/supportand donate any time here.
Thank you to everyone who donated making our 2023 Season possible!
Eve & William Appleton
Mike & Kelly Bedard
John Bell & Trudi Cohen
The Boxcutter Collective
Helen & Jeff Friedman
Jess & Bryan Rosenberg
Pandora & John Wohler
Thank you to the 28 anonymous heroes who donated.
Thank you for a donation made in loving memory of
Our 2023 Fundraiser is live!
Thank you for making Theater in Asylum a vibrant space for new, provocative, and joyful research- and ensemble-driven theater! We are so deeply grateful to our community that makes this all possible. We have big dreams for next year, and we hope you will consider donating to our 2023 season, our 13th year of work. You’ll be supporting a new production, increased artist pay, free tickets at every show, Cold Readings, and a more sustainable structure for the company.
Looking Back, Reaching ForwardLast year, your support made it possible for us to grow and develop in tremendous ways. In 2022, we:
With your support, we can build on our growth in 2022 to reach new heights in 2023. For our 13th year, we’re looking to :
Our Focus for 2023: The FTP Show
What’s it All About?
The FTP Show (working title) explores the story of the Federal Theatre Project (FTP), a New Deal program that allocated federal tax dollars to directly employ thousands of theater artists from 1953. Led by Hallie Flanagan, the project thrived across the country, and approximately one quarter of all Americans saw an FTP production.
Our show focuses on six artists, following them from the FTP’s inception in 1935 through its demise in 1939, with flashes forward to the fights at the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) in the 60’s and 90’s to the COVID-19 pandemic and today. Our characters represent, in Hallie Flanagan's words, the "ten thousand anonymous men and women who did the work, the somebodies who believed" in the Federal Theatre Project and made it exist.
The piece will showcase the major theatrical successes of the FTP, the tougher internal moments, and the external pressures of congressional censorship and accusations of Communism. Our characters fracture in debate as the play jumps forward in time. Over 80 years later a group of artists on Zoom, some benefitting from Covid Relief grants, others not, wrestle with the same questions of public funding and art’s value in society.
We’ve been developing this show for over a year through research, readings of FTP plays, and a workshop this past summer. This production will be our biggest to date with a three-week run at the Jalopy Theater in Summer 2023. With this long of a run, we have the chance to have our work seen by more people and let the idea of what a present-day federally-funded theater could be catch fire.
Financially, we are prioritizing people with this production. Artists stipends will increase by over 300% from our past productions, allowing our artists to concentrate on the process and less on making ends meet. Visit the fundraising page to see a detailed chart of our expenses for 2023.
Other Happenings in 2023: Continuing Cold Readings
Since 2015, Theater in Asylum has gathered friends and fans to read and discuss great plays (152 so far!). Wednesday nights have become a cherished place not only for play reading but for processing these wild times. We plan to continue a combination of online and in-person readings, as well as invite guest facilitators to bring new plays and ideas to the group. Part theater-literacy, part social-event, Cold Readings continue to be a bright spot in Theater in Asylum’s work.
Our Ask and Our Gratitude
If you are in a position to donate, we humbly ask for your support of Theater in Asylum’s work in 2023. From $5 to $5000, any amount is helpful and will make a difference! Plus, as an extra thank you for donating, we have a number of lovely perks for you to choose from!
I can’t donate, but I want to help. What else can I do?
Have a talent you can lend us? Become a perk partner and donate your time and talents to our donors. Email email@example.com
Have social media or a blog? Write about us and encourage your friends to chip in to our fundraiser!
We are so grateful for all that’s been made possible these past 12 years, and we look ahead to 2023 with eagerness and hope.
We have ambitious plans for 2023. Thank you, thank you for your donations that make these plans possible.
We wish you and yours safety, good health, and a bright new year.
Paul, Katie, Kathryn, Charlotte, Al, Melissa, Brea, and Adin
Help us make theater in 2022!
Can you believe that 2021 is nearly finished? As the pandemic continued and all of us have faced unrelenting challenges, we are proud and grateful to report that Theater in Asylum continued to bring artists and audiences together through it all. We are so grateful for your support that made our work possible. We humbly ask for your continued support of our work with a donation to our 2022 fundraiser.
We began the year in lockdown, continuing our Cold Reading series, with 33 play readings in total, including three in-person. The spring brought a Zoom production (The Debates 2021) and its related events (four debate watch parties and analysis meetings, plus three “Civics Happy Hours”). In the fall, as we emerged from lockdown, we produced our first in-person play in over a year with Andy Boyd’s Occupy Prescott. In the midst of all this we shared a new mission statement, community agreements, and a transparency commitment with reporting mechanisms. We won grants from the Brooklyn Arts Council and the New York City Artist Corp. We returned to in-person work at ART/NY’s South Oxford Space and found a new home at the Jalopy Theater and Tavern. We met and worked with dozens of new artists and continued our anti-oppression work with Indie Theaters Dismantling Supremacy.
As we continue to work towards a healed world, we look ahead to 2022, our 12th year, with hope. Cold Readings, our most consistent program, will continue and even expand, with new curatorial processes and team.
The highlight of 2022, however, is beginning a multi-year process to explore and share the story of Hallie Flanagan and the Federal Theatre Project (FTP). If you’re unfamiliar, she’s a rarely-sung hero of the American Theater, leading the New Deal Era relief program to put theater people back to work. The Project was highly successful, reaching nearly one in four Americans in its brief four-year existence. Despite its popularity, the FTP was also the subject of great controversy, as was Hallie Flanagan herself - accused of being a Communist by the House Un-American Activities Committee. We at TIA have long been fascinated by the pioneering Hallie Flanagan and her Federal Theatre Project, our country’s only instance of federally funded theater. As believers in the arts as a public good, we want to investigate the success and pitfalls of the 1930s project and its legacy. We'll ask how FTP could ever exist again, and what would be its struggles in our contemporary world.
To explore this project, we'll host two events. In Spring 2022, we will present a cabaret of short works, our favorite way to invite artist-friends to our brainstorm. This FTP Cabaret will feature theater, music, dance, and poetry; we commit to paying the 40+ artists we plan to invite. In Summer 2022, we will hunker down for an extended workshop of this untitled Hallie Flanagan project, with plans to present the full production in early 2023.
If you are in a position to donate, we humbly ask for your support of Theater in Asylum’s 2022 season. We are so grateful for all that’s been made possible this past year despite such difficulty. We look ahead to 2022 with gratitude, eagerness, and hope.
Learn more about our 2022 season and donate at
Thank you so, so much.
Peace, power, and love to you,
Paul Bedard, Katie Palmer, and Kathryn Appleton
TIA Co-Artistic Directors and Managing Director
Thank you to everyone who joined us last week for Civics Happy Hour. Thank you also to our fearless bread bakers, who took Rick’s sourdough bread baking class this weekend as a "perk” from donating to our fundraiser. What delicious looking loaves!
Next up, join us TONIGHT to discuss LIT's recent Meet-the-
Candidates Forum. Learn more and RSVP here.
The Debates 2021 is sponsored, in part, by the Greater New York Arts Development Fund of the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, administered by Brooklyn Arts Council (BAC).
Hope to see you soon!
Peace, power, and love to you,
Paul, Katie, Kathryn, and Hilarie
Theater in Asylum (TIA) is a New York-based theater company founded in 2010 to challenge and empower our community. TIA joyfully pursues a rigorous research and an ensemble-driven approach to theater-making. We create performances to investigate our past, interpret our present, and imagine our future. We prize space to process, space to question—asylum—for ourselves and our community.