Since its founding, Double Edge Theatre has embraced a two-fold mission: to develop and promote the highest quality of original theatre performance, and to create a permanent center of performance, practice, training research, and cultural exchange. The collection documents the theatre's focus on research, international collaboration, and the elevation of artistic performance above and beyond stage work into the realm of cultural exchange.
The collection is open for research.
Background on Double Edge Theatre
Double Edge Theatre, founded in 1982, views itself as having a two-fold mission: to develop and promote the highest quality of original theatre performance, and to create at its home, "The Farm," located in Ashfield, Massachusetts, a permanent center of performance, practice, training research, and cultural exchange. The group's focus is on "living culture," a term used to describe both their unique method of research, exchange and collaborations in many parts of the world, and the belief that their work has the ability to transform an audience. This vision is exemplified in The Song Trilogy, a performance cycle more than ten years in the making about the life of the Jewish community in diaspora and its relationship to the various cultures which it confronts.
The group first performed in Allston, a district of Boston, before purchasing the Farm in 1995 both to escape the high cost of rent in the city as well as to expand the activities of the center. The 105-acre farm, one of oldest dairy farms in rural Ashfield, hosts artists, students, and community exchange, and permits the theatre to more fully embrace the practice of "living culture." From the Farm's opening in 1997, DET has premiered four of its own performances, created extra-theatrical research and exchange projects, long-term residencies, and collaborations with over a dozen artists and countries from across the United States, Asia, Latin America and Europe. In 1999 Double Edge initiated the first artist's think tank in this country to research theatre, culture, and creation, and to provide a place for professional artists to work free from the demands of daily survival.
The records of Double Edge Theatre trace the history of this experimental company from their first performance featuring an all-female cast to their more recent collaborations and projects, which have secured them a prominent place in the international theater community. The collection documents the theatre's focus on research, international collaboration, and the elevation of artistic performance above and beyond stage work into the realm of cultural exchange.
The collection is organized into five series that together document Double Edge's productions and performances, their involvement and relationships with other theaters and cultural projects, as well as the administrative side of operating the theatre.
Acquired from Stacy Klein in 2005.
For collections in SCUA related to theater, see:
Please use the following format when citing materials from this collection:
Double Edge Theatre Records (MS 455). Special Collections and University Archives, University of Massachusetts Amherst Libraries.