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Things are hot in the Kitchen! Here's a little about us...

Artistic Vision

Bold. Intimate. Engaging.
"Important Conversations Happen in the Kitchen"

BOLD: We do plays that make you think. We do plays that challenge you to see the world differently; that’s BOLD.

INTIMATE: We do work that directly connects the audience and performer. We do work that is focused on the actor and on what we all share as humans; that’s INTIMATE.

ENGAGING: We do work that leads to Important Conversations about theatre and about the larger world; that’s ENGAGING.

Mission


In its intimate performance space, Kitchen Theatre Company (KTC) creates professional theater that challenges the intellect, excites the imagination, informs and entertains. KTC nurtures a community of diverse artists and brings excellent art to the community and beyond by:

• Developing and producing new plays, exploring established repertory and contributing to the field of American theater
• Encouraging collaboration and offering a safe haven for experimentation
• Providing programming that inspires young people, opens the door to newcomers, and speaks to a broad cross-section of our community
• Advancing a culture of theatergoing

Community and Connections

KTC strives to create connections and community. Connection between the artist and the audience. Connections among community members and between our community and the larger world.

KTC’s unique position in the Ithaca and Tompkins County communities allows it to offer local and visiting theater artists and groups access to the space through the Kitchen Sink Series. Participating area theater companies including Civic Ensemble, Homecoming Players and Running To Places.

KTC also collaborates with other theatre's outside of Tompkins County, including the Geva Theatre in Rochester. This year we will be starting a new collaboration with the Boston Playwrights Theatre.

History

Kitchen Theatre Company was the dream of a group of talented and determined theater artists. In 1991, they created a place where they could work together and hone their craft. Led by Matt Tauber and Tim O'Brien, the Kitchen Theatre Company’s productions were infused with the high energy and drive of hungry young artists setting out to change the world. For the fourth through the sixth seasons, Norm Johnson, Jr. took up the artistic reins. Norm championed the challenging and difficult over easy entertainment.

KTC resided at the Clinton House from 1995 to 2009. In 2010, Kitchen Theatre Company (KTC) moved to 417 W. Martin Luther King, Jr. Street, making history by becoming the first theater company in Ithaca to own its own location. The completion of the building represented the culmination of a dream of Kitchen Theatre Company staff and board. The Campaign for a Bold, New Space, led by co-chairs Percy Browning, KTC Past Board President, and Greg Hartz, CEO Tompkins Trust Company, along with KTC Artistic Director Emeritus, Rachel Lampert and Managing Director, Stephen Nunley, successfully raised $1.2M to construct a LEED-certified green building that includes a 99-seat thrust stage space, dressing rooms, green room, scene shop, inner lobby, outer lobby/art gallery, hospitality bar, box office, and a striking glass entranceway called "the beacon" that welcomes all to the Kitchen's new home.

Artistic Director Emerita Rachel Lampert led the company from 1997 to 2017. Rachel’s passion and experience in creating new works brought the artistic quality and funding to new levels. Along the way, she shared her own theatre adventures, used the theatre in exciting new ways, engaged underserved audiences and gave younger artists, especially women, many opportunities including early career directorial assignments to Wendy Dann, Michele Minnick and Katie Pearl and produced new works by Darian Dauchan, Wendy Dann and Brian Dykstra.

Lampert retired at the end of the 2016-2017 season, and M. Bevin O’Gara took the helm as the company’s new Producing Artistic Director. O’Gara came to the Kitchen from Boston, where she was Associate Producer at the Huntington Theatre and directed productions throughout the Boston area.

The Kitchen Theatre's LEED-certified building on West State/MLK Jr. Street in Ithaca. Photo by Dave Burbank.


Managing Director Stephen Nunley
and Producing Artistic Director M. Bevin O'Gara