Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park Announces Inaugural Members of New Artist Development Program

Two local theater artists and nine organizations make up a diverse class of participants in the Playhouse's new Arts and Culture Incubator.

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click to enlarge A rendering of the new theater complex - Photo: Provided by the Playhouse in the Park
Photo: Provided by the Playhouse in the Park
A rendering of the new theater complex

Playhouse in the Park will offer more than just superficial changes come spring. Amidst the construction of the Mainstage Theatre Complex, Playhouse aims to deepen roots in the community. It will establish a program that gives individual artists and groups opportunities to develop their existing work through the use of facility spaces in the new complex.

The Arts and Culture Incubator program launches in March, along with the projected debut of the Mainstage Theatre Complex featuring Moe and Jack's Place - The Rouse Theatre.

The new incubator program will allow select members access to facility spaces for classes, events, rehearsals, creative work, networking and collaboration, according to a Playhouse press release. The Playhouse team will also offer participants professional development services catered to individual needs. The inaugural class of Arts and Culture Incubatees was recently announced; it includes nine organizations and two Cincinnati-based theater artists.

“Theater is inherently a collaborative art form — no play makes it to the stage without the talents of a production team and a company that affords them resources,” Osborn Family Producing Director, Blake Robison, said in a press release. “We recognize that we can provide this same kind of collaborative energy for our artistic and cultural peers. It’s a privilege for us to share our new facility and its resources so they can continue and deepen their work. Ultimately, our entire community benefits from their talents.”

Playhouse selected nine organizations that serve the region in different ways through artistic and cultural work. The nine exclusive selections are: Cincinnati Music Accelerator, Cincinnati Pride, DuWaup’s Cincinnati Poetry Slam, Elevated Aerials, Greater Cincinnati Native American Coalition, Heroes Rise Street Dance Academy, Queen City Flash, Science on Tap and Young Professionals Choral Collective of Cincinnati.

Playhouse’s Resident Artist Program, which is part of the Arts and Culture Incubator, includes two individual program members, Derek J. Snow and Curtis D. Shepard. Shepard is an actor, writer and spoken-word artist. Snow is an actor, writer and director.

Playhouse director of artistic engagement, Daunielle Rasmussen, worked with Robison to create the Arts and Culture Incubator. The program’s inception was inspired by conversations with local artists and organizations during the pandemic, according to a Playhouse press release. The idea was to figure out how future Playhouse programming could support artists’ existing and upcoming projects.

“Artists in Cincinnati need space, professional development, equipment and visibility,” Rasmussen said in a press release. “We recognized that our name has weight, and just by backing a partner that we’ve worked with previously on shows and projects, it opened doors for them to pursue other partnerships that hadn't been available to them.”

For more information about Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, visit cincyplay.com.

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