We create great American theater by developing and producing new works and world masterpieces that most richly direct our gaze to the life of the human spirit. We cultivate an audience that cherishes the intimate joy of theater, enriched when shared by a community of others.
Two River Theater, under the leadership of Artistic Director John Dias and Managing Director Michael Hurst, develops and produces great American theater created by the today’s most gifted, adventurous artists. Each year, more than 55,000 patrons and guests come through our doors to see exceptional productions in our intimate performance spaces, the Joan and Robert Rechnitz Theater and the Marion Huber Theater. Audiences come here knowing that whether we are producing a beloved classic, something brand new, or a rediscovered masterpiece, we are inviting them on an adventure: to experience great stories on stage, engage with us in conversation, and encounter the life of the human spirit in all its shifting modes.
Founded in 1994, Two River Theater now enjoys new recognition in the national theater community for our new-play commissioning program, launched in 2010 to create a pipeline for developing work that contributes to the vitality and future of the American theater. Commissions currently in development include plays by Madeleine George (author of Seven Homeless Mammoths Wander New England), Lisa Kron (writer and performer of 2.5 Minute Ride), Martin Moran (writer and performer of A Map of the Soul), and Ruben Santiago-Hudson (director of August Wilson’s Jitney and Two Trains Running), and two new musicals: one by Daniel Maté, and the other by the team of composer/lyricist Joe Iconis and bookwriter Joe Tracz. Each season, we host numerous artist residencies, workshops, and readings to support the development of new work for the American theater. Our annual programs include a Cabaret of New Songs for the Musical Theater in association with NYU’s Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program; and Crossing Borders, a four-day festival of new plays by Latino writers and free community events.
We cultivate a new generation of theatergoers through innovative arts education programs that introduce young people to the theater and create opportunities for them to engage with renowned theater artists. The theater’s new “A Little Shakespeare” series, launched during our 20th Anniversary Season, showcases an annual production of a Shakespeare play performed by high-school students and includes both public performances and student matinees. Each year, our education programs and student matinees serve students in 50 schools across our region. Classroom residencies support academic achievement and, in partnership with schools in Red Bank and Asbury Park, we have launched programs that introduce at-risk adolescents to theater.