William Inge Theatre Festival



Photos: Arthur Kopit, Erma Duricko, George Sheffey, Joseph Gomez, and Sarah Shaefer
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Country and Region United StatesKansas
Type of Festival Drama
Location of Festival Independence, Kansas USA
Festival Contact Information

William Inge Theatre Festival
William Inge Center for the Arts
Independence Community College
P. O. Box 708
1057 W. College Avenue
Independence, KS 67301 USA
Phone: (01) 620-331-4100, Ext. 4216; or 800-842-6063, Ext. 4216
Fax: (01) 620-331-9022
Email: info@ingecenter.org

Festival Description

The William Inge Theatre Festival is a unique blend of Broadway and Hollywood mixing with hometown can-do spirit. Hundreds of Independence community volunteers provide hospitality to visiting guest artists, theater students, and theater buffs from across the nation. In addition to evening performances by professionals from Broadway and Hollywood, patrons enjoy workshops, panel discussions, a scholars conference and social events.

Since its founding in 1981, the William Inge Theatre Festival has celebrated the accomplishments of nationally renowned playwrights.   Inge, who passed away in 1973, was the Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright of “Picnic” and Academy Award-winning screenwriter of “Splendor in the Grass.”

The Inge Festival’s setting is the quaint small town of Independence, located in rural southeast Kansas. It is 90 miles north of Tulsa, Oklahoma, and 140 miles south of Kansas City, Missouri. The Inge Festival is sponsored by the William Inge Center for the Arts, a year-round arts center at Independence Community College.

Festival Dates March 26 - 29, 2014
Festival Links http://www.ingefestival.org

Festival Story:

2010 marked the first full year that The William Inge Theatre Festival was designated as the Official Theater Festival of the State of Kansas. The Inge Festival is a unique blend of Broadway and Hollywood sheen and hometown can-do spirit. Hundreds of community volunteers help provide hospitality to visiting guest artists, theater students, and theater buffs from across the nation. In addition to evening performances by professionals from Broadway and Hollywood, patrons enjoy workshops, panel discussions, a scholars conference and social events.

Major supporters of the William Inge Center for the Arts include the Kansas Arts Commission; Hallmark Corporation; the William T. Kemper Foundation; and Independence Community College. The Inge Festival’s setting is the quaint small town of Independence, located in rural southeast Kansas. It is 90 miles north of Tulsa, Okla., and 140 miles south of Kansas City, Mo. The Inge Festival is sponsored by the William Inge Center for the Arts, a year-round arts center at Independence Community College.

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Festival Events:

Inge Festival Honoree 2014:
  • Arthur Kopit
    • The playwright, librettist, screenwriter, adapter and mentor, a multiple Tony and Drama Desk and Pulitzer Prize nominee, will be the Honoree of the 33rd Annual William Inge Theatre Festival. Kopit joins the roster of internationally renowned playwrights who have traveled to the Inge Festival to receive the William Inge Distinguished Achievement in the American Theatre Award. This select company includes Arthur Miller, Stephen Sondheim, Edward Albee, Wendy Wasserstein, David Henry Hwang, Tina Howe and Neil Simon, to name only a few. “Arthur Kopit’s is an inspirational fixture of the American theatre,” said Peter Ellenstein, Inge Center Artistic Director. “Kopit’s work impossible to define. His plays and musicals are, by turns, funny, human, challenging, warm, experimental, political, disturbing, witty, constantly surprising and deeply human.” Ellenstein said, “He has also served as mentor to scores of younger playwrights. We are thrilled to have such a versatile, universally respected honoree joining us in Independence next year.” Kopit will attend the Inge Festival, March 26-29, 2014, and present a writing workshop. At the multi-media Tribute performance, which concludes the festival, Kopit will accept the annual William Inge Theatre Festival’s Distinguished Achievement in the American Theatre Award. Kopit burst on the scene in 1962, while still a college student, with a series of avant-garde absurdist plays that captured the imagination of America’s greatest theatre artists. In the subsequent fifty years, Kopit has become one of the most respected and versatile dramatists of our time. A playwrights’ playwright, he not only continues to add to his own prolific contribution to the American Theatre, but also nurtures and mentors younger generations of playwrights through his long association with The Lark New Play Development Center in New York City.

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Practical Info:

Tickets:
  • By phone
    Toll free at 800-842-6063, Ext. 5491, weekdays 1:00-5:00pm
  • By fax
    (01) 620-331-9022
  • In person
    Inge Center office at Fine Arts Bldg., room 123, at Independence Community College. weekdays 1:00-5:00pm
  • By email
    hjoyce@ingecenter.org
  • Online
    http://www.ingefestival.org

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