Transylvania Theater has received a grant from partner AthensWest Theatre Company, which is closing and distributing its assets to organizations with similar artistic missions.
The university received $28,000 for developing new plays. It was one of two large donations to local organizations — the other was to the Carnegie Center for Literacy and Learning. Smaller grants went to other area theater groups.
“Transylvania University was a great friend to AthensWest, with lots of support in many forms — from loaned costumes and props to advice from its marvelous chair to brainstorming and collaboration,” said Bo List, producing artistic director for AthensWest.
Based in Lexington, the professional theater company began in 2014, producing 17 performances and partnering with Transylvania on projects.
Tosha Fowler, Transylvania’s Lucille C. Little Chair of Theater and program director, was actually slated to direct the 2022-23 AthensWest season opener before the closure was announced.
“It made sense to support Transy’s efforts to bring new and exciting theatrical voices to life, if for no other reason than because our name — AthensWest — is inspired by Lexington’s early nickname, Athens of the West, which Transy helped inspire in the city’s earliest days,” List said. “Lexington was revered for its commitment to education, culture and the arts. We believe in that commitment and know that Transy will continue to bear that standard of innovation and expression for generations to come.”
Fowler said, “The theater program is honored to accept such a generous and visionary gift from AthensWest.”
She thanked List, along with AthensWest associate producer Marianne Phelps and board president Judy Keitz. “They are true champions of supporting new work, and we at Transy are very excited to begin this new and innovative initiative of cultivating new work in Lexington.”
Check out what’s on tap for Transylvania Theater this season. Next up is its production of the Pulitzer Prize-winning “Angels in America: Millennium Approaches,” which runs Feb. 22-26.