With Chestnut Hill’s Stagecrafters Theater, East Falls’ Old Academy Players, and Mount Airy’s Allens Lane Theater, there’s a surprising number of theaters in Northwest Philadelphia. Two of the newest companies, SmokeyScout Productions and Quintessence Theatre Group are hoping to foster and connect more performing arts companies and artists in the area with an evening of (free) beer and conversation on Monday, April 20, at Quintessence’s home in the classic Sedgwick Theater.
“We’re really curious who else is out here, and of those we know are out here, who wants to get together and talk,” says Josh McIlvain, artistic director of SmokeyScout. “We want to have everyone meet each other and start conversations between colleagues. Network, and exchange ideas about opportunities and the building performing arts profile in the Northwest.”
SmokeyScout was founded in New York City in 2008 by husband-wife team McIlvain (also of FringeArts) and Deborah Crocker (formerly of Koresh Dance Company and the Pennsylvania Ballet) and moved to Philadelphia with the couple in 2010. Since 2013, the company has produced Nice and Fresh, seasons of monthly performing arts revues in Mount Airy and Germantown.
Since 2009, Quintessence has been producing contemporary versions of classic works in a renovated movie palace on Germantown Avenue. Artistic director Alexander Burns was recently given his first major-theater directorial gig for the Arden Theatre’s staging of Macbeth.
“There are other companies, artists, venues and potential presenters,” says McIlvain, “and I share a desire with Quintessence to meet everyone and get us all talking about making work out in these neighborhoods. Are we a few? Are we a lot? Are there was to work together? Resources to share? Is there a way to make sure people out here look first to their neighborhood for performing arts?”
Representatives of performing arts companies and/or venues are encouraged (not required) to give a 3-minute introduction about their organization. Companies are encouraged to bring literature. Performers, directors, and designers, etc. are welcome to bring resumes/headshots. Arts professionals and administrators are also encouraged to come. The evening is FREE and open to all who are involved in the performing arts—or those who are interested in having more performing arts—in the Northwest (Chestnut Hill, Mt Airy, Germantown, Manayunk, Roxborough).
When: Monday, April 20 7pm–9pm
Where: Quintessence Theatre, 7137 Germantown Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19119
RSVP at firstname.lastname@example.org