A LETTER FROM rachel Bonds


Recently, while I was walking in the park and watching the leaves come down, I thought about the old selves I have here in New York City. When I first started dating my husband, he always rode his bike. I didn’t have a bike, but I got one so that I could ride with him, and he taught me how to ride my bike in the city. And although so much has changed over the years, and especially now that we have a baby, I still get small flashes of what it was to be young like that—the cold air, how I was always biking between boroughs, going from one home to another.

Studio is an artistic home away from home for me. When I think about where I want to work out of town—I’m still based in New York—it’s Studio that comes to mind. It’s a place that I want to continue to work at again and again, that I like to return to. It just feels like the kind of place where I want my work produced, and the kind of place where I’d like to maintain a longstanding relationship.

In 2014, Studio produced my play, The Wolfe Twins, after having read only one draft. That’s extraordinary. Theatres are so often averse to risk, and especially to the risk of new work, that they’ll put a play through a seemingly endless cycle of rewrites and readings, only to decide not to produce the play after all. But after I turned in that first draft, David [Muse, Studio’s Artistic Director] said to me, “We’re going to do it. And sure, there are issues to be addressed in this draft, but I trust that you’ll address them because you’re a good writer.” Studio offered me an experience to learn and become better, and that’s both very unusual and very, very valuable.

The wonderful thing about Studio is that there isn’t one type of story that this theatre tends to tell. Studio is a place where the kinds of artists that are doing something slightly unusual and a little daring are working; there’s what I consider a “downtown” vibe, which makes it really appealing to me.  And I think it’s really exciting that Studio, through its new works initiative Studio R&D, continues to support artists who want to work in different ways and want to tell different kinds of stories—and I say, as many productions you can give those writers, the better.

It feels to me like Studio goes out of their way to produce things that not everyone has heard of. That feels a little risky. But when you’re at a place like Studio, that risk feels encouraging—even, sometimes, like coming home.

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Studio Theatre

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