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Our History and Mission

Moonbox Productions began in 2011, when we raised the curtain for a one-weekend run of Godspell at the historic Brattle Theater in Cambridge, Massachusetts. As the band filed in each night, an unusual warm-up act took the stage – guests from a local non-profit called StreetSafe Boston, an anti-gang-violence program of the Boston Foundation. By sharing the spotlight for just a few minutes, Moonbox gave StreetSafe a chance to showcase the amazing work they were doing in our communities – earning them friends and funds from eager audiences moved by their story.  That production became the seed of our company and its unique dual mission – to create exceptional theater using local talent and to connect our audiences with the other non-profit organizations doing wonderful work in our area.   Ten years and over twenty productions and non-profit partnerships later, Moonbox has continued creating and connecting, building an ever-widening circle of friends, partners and collaborators. Our mission has expanded, too, as we’ve broadened our desire and our ability to educate and include audiences, artists, and activists throughout Boston. 

Mentorship Programs

In 2016 we launched the Moonbox “Shadowbox” Mentorship Program, which provides hands-on theater experiences to emerging creative artists and theater technicians, all at no cost to them. The following year saw our test workshops for “Moonbox U”, an initiative to provide low- and no-cost continuing education and professional development for Boston-area working artists. Moonbox U’s first programs included not only traditional audition workshops and complimentary yoga classes, but also offered interdisciplinary round-tables where theater professionals from all walks of life could connect and share wisdom, with panelists ranging from opera singers to audiobook narrators, video-game music directors to musical theater mavens. After a short hiatus, Moonbox U is picking up steam again in 2021, with more exciting opportunities ahead for artists in Boston and beyond. 

Our Commitment to Accessibility

In 2018 we began Turning the Tide, a program designed with a two-part mission of accessibility. Turning the Tide’s first aim is to create more opportunities for theater professionals living with Deafness or disability, whether they’re working on or off the stage. Its second aim is to present  stories of Deafness and disability to a wider audience. We want to prove that not only is compelling theater accessible – but also that accessible theater is, in itself, compelling.   

Our Commitment to Social Justice

As issues of social justice and racial inequality rise in our national consciousness, we at Moonbox have responded by broadening and deepening our commitment to anti-racism and community advocacy. Beginning in November of 2020, we have: hired a Director of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion; assembled an Advisory Board of theater professionals representing BIPOC, Deaf, and disabled perspectives; and developed a comprehensive Anti-Racism Statement that commits us to increasing BIPOC representation at every level of our company.  

Award-Winning Theatre

We’re exceptionally grateful for – and proud of  – the opportunities we’ve had to connect with artists, advocates, and audiences throughout Greater Boston, and we’re also grateful for the recognition our artistic work has achieved on its independent merit. Since our founding, Moonbox has been honored by numerous laudatory reviews and raves from audiences and critics alike – garnering Moonbox numerous IRNE and Elliot Norton Awards ranging from Best Musical,  Best Actor & Actress, to Best Scenic and Costume Design recognitions.

Boston New Works Festival

As we hunkered down over the COVID shutdown, we found an extraordinary opportunity to focus on one of our long-deferred goals: developing new works by local playwrights.  As part of our Boston New Works Festival initiative, in year 1, we received more than sixty-five play proposals, from which we chose eleven original theatrical pieces by local artists for a year-long intensive workshop process culminating in fully-staged productions. This has turned into an ANNUAL event celebrating LOCAL work by LOCAL playwrights performed by LOCAL artists.  We’re in year 3.  Join us for Boston New Works Festival 2024!

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Antiracism Statement

#CreateCommunity 

At Moonbox, we believe that the stories we tell are important. They sustain and preserve our community, our history, and our values. Telling racially diverse stories allows us not only to reflect – but also to reflect on – the complexities of our past. When we join together in the act of storytelling, we are united in ways that transcend the everyday. Together, we can use the power of storytelling to honor our commonalities, celebrate our differences, and address historical discrimination and injustice. We pledge to take this power seriously, and to use our voices and the stories we tell to dismantle the systemic racism and white supremacy engulfing our culture, our country, and our industry.

Our Pledge

We pledge to create an anti-racist culture that resonates not just on our stages, but throughout the communities they support.  We stand in solidarity with our BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and Persons of Color) community. With open hearts, we say that Black lives more than matter – they are a crucial part of the fabric of our society and the work we do as artists. We pledge to raise up and interweave diverse voices in all of our endeavors, creating a vibrant tapestry in the art that we produce.  At Moonbox, we pledge not just to acknowledge the crucial nature of this work, but to act on it. We will:

  • Implement anti-racist practices in both our internal policies and our external initiatives;
  • Intentionally create an anti-racist culture among our staff, advisory panel, and artists;
  • Produce works that truthfully reflect the community around us – both as it has been and as we hope it will become; and
  • Actively monitor what works and what doesn’t, convening at least quarterly to make sure we continue our progress along an anti-racist path.

This will be hard work, and that it is long overdue. We are only beginning to unravel decades of injustice, and we must be steadfast in our commitment to positive change. We will work tenaciously and tirelessly to make sure that everyone – at every level of our organization, and throughout the communities we support – feels that they belong.

Land Acknowledgment

We recognize that the land we live, work, and thrive upon is not our own.  We acknowledge that this land was taken from Indigenous communities that have endured a painful history of genocide and colonization. With every production and in every printed program, we will pause to honor the legacy of these people and our shared responsibilities in reconciliation. We invite you to join us as we consider our roles in decolonization and co-conspiratorship.   This plan is a working document and will be updated often and as necessary.  This plan is in response to the list if demands by the anti-racism organization #WSYWAT (We See You White American Theatre).

Our Action Plan

By January 2021, Moonbox will have completed a comprehensive anti-racism policy that we will share widely with our community to affirm our position in dismantling racist practices within our shared theater community. This policy will be a work in progress and will be adjusted accordingly to fit our ever-changing atmosphere.

Advisory Panel

By February 2021, Moonbox will create a community-member advisory panel whose membership contains at least three to four artists who identify as members of the BIPOC community. This panel will serve as a resource to Moonbox staff, artists and community partners who enter into open dialogues on how we are engaging with all communities and be a voice in helping us implement better practices.   Initially, we envision panel members serving a one-year term with the option to renew for a second year based on mutual agreement. Ultimately, we will aim for a panel of four to six advisers, made up either of two cohorts of two with staggered two-year terms, or two cohorts of three with staggered two-year terms.  Each year, Moonbox’s staff and advisory panel will partner with BIPOC community leaders and Non-Profit Partners and engage in dialogue to determine how we can deepen our support in these communities.

Implicit Bias Training

At present Moonbox is engaged in bi-weekly courses guided by CELC (Cultural Equity Learning Center) with goals to:

  • Reduce harm towards Black, Indigenous, queer, and trans persons of color (BIPOC | QTPOC), and well as persons of color with disabilities.
  • Increase the skill sets and accountability of white arts and culture sector leaders.
  • Delve into what it means to build anti-racist co-conspiratorship within the sector.
  • Deeply examine what it means to build anti-racist arts and culture organizations.

By Spring 2021, Moonbox staff will engage in quarterly training including but not limited to implicit bias training, anti-racism in theater training, bystander intervention training, conflict de-escalation training, and harassment prevention training.

Hiring and On-Boarding

By April 2021, Moonbox will implement an orientation and onboarding process for all staff, artists, advisory panel members, contractors and volunteers that includes anti-racism awareness and a zero-tolerance harassment policy. Upon completion, all personnel will be required to sign an anti-racism pledge and zero-tolerance harassment agreement. As Moonbox grows and opportunities to increase our staff develop, we will intentionally seek out BIPOC applicants and cast our nets in BIPOC-specific networks in the quest to keep our staff diverse and inclusive.

Productions

Moonbox will engage with culturally accurate directors and design staff when producing BIPOC-centered stories. Equally, we will engage with BIPOC directors and designers when producing non-BIPOC-centered stories. Moonbox will be intentional in selecting and producing BIPOC-centered shows – not only those of the struggle, but those rich in the accomplishments and success of the BIPOC community. These productions will make up 50% of our season.

Commitment to Inclusivity

Historically, we feel that we have fallen short in achieving sufficient levels of equity and representation, and we commit to changing that by:

  • Increasing the number of BIPOC* artists (actors) within our mainstage season until there is equal and adequate racial/ ethnic representation, so that our stage is a true reflection of the communities we serve;
  • Increasing the number of  BIPOC* musicians within our mainstage season until there equal and adequate racial/ ethnic representation, so that our stage is a true reflection of the communities we serve;
  • Increasing the number of BIPOC* design/production staff within our mainstage season until there equal and adequate racial/ ethnic representation, so that our stage is a true reflection of the communities we serve.

We will also apply all of the action points above to the curation of our annual Boston New Works Festival and Breaking Bread Projects. We will also be intentional with directly reaching out to historically marginalized communities when engaging our community through our Shadowbox Program and Moonbox U initiative.  Moonbox will be intentional in our marketing, seeking ways to share our productions with the broader community. Specifically, we will increase our visibility within BIPOC* communities in a through direct and dedicated marketing, mailers, and digital engagement to increase BIPOC* audience attendance, creating a community where everyone is welcomed. Moonbox will deepen our engagement with BIPOC-led and -focused Non-Profit Partners; these BIPOC partnerships will make up 50% of the Non-Profit Partners for each season. *What does BIPOC mean? BIPOC is a broad umbrella term broken down to mean Black/  Indigenous/ Person of Color. Within this broad term, here are some non-exhaustive examples of those that are considered “BIPOC”: Black, African-American, those of the African diaspora, Indigenous (American Indian, Native American, First Nations, Native Alaskan, Alaskan Native), Asian, East Asian Latine(o/a/x), South Asian, Hawaiian, Pacific Islander.

Staff

Kailey Bennett

Kailey Bennett

Covid Safety Manager & Production Manager

Originally from Broken Arrow, Oklahoma, graduated from Bowdoin College in 2014 where she studied Visual Arts and Earth and Oceanographic Sciences. Since moving to Boston, she has worked professionally as a stage manager and properties designer with Boston area opera and theatre companies including, Moonbox Productions, Company One, Guerilla Opera, Odyssey Opera, the North End Music and Performing Arts Center, Boston Baroque, and Wheelock Family Theatre. As a person with epilepsy...

Allison Olivia Choat

Allison Olivia Choat

Associate Artistic Director and Founding Partner

Allison Olivia Choat (she, her, hers/ they, them, theirs) is an IRNE and Elliot Norton award-winning theater artist whose work lies at the intersection of direction, design, and physical storytelling. She is honored to be Associate Artistic Director of Moonbox Productions and Founding Partner of the company...

Bridget Kathleen O’Leary

Bridget Kathleen O’Leary

Director of New Play Development and Literary Engagement

Bridget Kathleen O'Leary is a freelance director, dramaturg and theater educator. From 2008-2018 she served as the Associate Artistic Director at New Repertory Theatre. Locally, Bridget has directed productions with New Repertory Theatre, Boston Playwrights’ Theatre, Actors’ Shakespeare Project, Gloucester Stage Company, Central Square Theatre, Whistler in the Dark and SpeakEasy Stage Company. Select world premiere directing credits include...

Regina Norfolk

Regina Norfolk

Publicist

Regina Norfolk founded RNCommunication, LLC, a public relations and special events company, in 2006 and has been the Publicist for Moonbox Productions since 2015. Throughout her career, she has worked extensively with public and private companies to spearhead successful launches and ongoing campaigns...

Phil Tayler

Phil Tayler

Director of Marketing and Communications

After years of artistic collaboration, Phil Tayler (He/Him/His) has been named Director of Marketing and Communications for Moonbox Productions. Phil is grateful for the opportunity to #CreateCommunity with this unbelievable organization...

Davron S. Monroe

Davron S. Monroe

Director of Equity, Diversity, & Inclusion

Davron S. Monroe is a Boston based award winning singer and actor with vocal talents that run the gamut from Opera to Musical Theatre, gospel to jazz and everything else in between. Davron is the 2019 recipient of The Elliot Norton Award for Outstanding Musical performance in Breath and Imagination...

Kara Crumrine

Kara Crumrine

Director of Community & Accessibility Initiatives

Kara, a DeafBlind Intervenor for Northeast Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services, came to Moonbox six years go to help implement and coordinate the company's Community Initiatives.

Sharman Altshuler

Sharman Altshuler

Producing Artistic Director

Sharman Altshuler is Producing Artistic Director and founder of Moonbox Productions. A practicing veterinarian for 15 years, she had a serendipitous collision with the world of theater in 2011 which led to the founding of Moonbox and, in time, the hanging up of the stethoscope.

Elmer Martinez

Elmer Martinez

Collaborative Arts Coordinator

Founder of Soul Stew and an interdisciplinary working theater artist, poet and dancer. Born in Lowell, MA he developed in the spoken word and street dance communities before completing his BFA in Theater Studies focused on Lighting Design with a minor in Dance.  Post grad Elmer went on to work between Boston and New York as a freelance lighting designer and technician in local theaters, off Broadway and...

Advisory Council

Kira Troilo

Kira Troilo

Kira Troilo has been working as a choreographer and performer in the Boston area since she graduated from Emerson College in 2008. She recently received an Elliott Norton nomination for her choreography for Moonbox Productions' recent production of Parade...

Patrick “Pax” McCarthy

Patrick “Pax” McCarthy

Patrick “Pax” McCarthy has quite extensive experience coaching theatre interpreters in American Sign Language since 1985 at various Boston theatres....

Elizabeth Yvette Ramirez

Elizabeth Yvette Ramirez

Elizabeth Yvette Ramirez (she/her) is a professional Stage Manager and small theater director. She was the Artistic Director of the Calliope Project Theatre (2011- 2014) and got involved in local arts activism after their regular venue, the Factory Theatre was closed...

Arthur Gomez

Arthur Gomez

Arthur is a Boston raised and based Actor, Director, and Collaborator. As a creative, he’s worked with a wide range of theatre’s in the New England area and as a collaborator he’s been lending ideas and assisting a multitude of companies and groups...

Damon Singletary

Damon Singletary

Damon Singletary is a Boston-area-based actor/playwright. He previously appeared in Moonbox's production of Target Practice as part of the 2015 Boston Theater Marathon.

Employment

Now Seeking: New Works Festival Stage Managers

Now Seeking: New Works Festival Stage Managers

Moonbox Productions seeks Stage Managers for our New Works Festival, performing June 20 – June 23, 2024 at the Boston Center for the Arts and Calderwood Pavilion. Rehearsal locations are TBD but T accessible. One stage manager will be paired with each production. 

Now Seeking New Works Festival Sound Designer

Now Seeking New Works Festival Sound Designer

Moonbox Productions is seeking Sound Designers for the New Works Festival, performing June 20 – June 23, 2024 at the Boston Center for the Arts and Calderwood Pavilion. Sound Designers will support the needs of one to two NWF productions. There are musical and play productions as part of this festival. 

Now Seeking: New Works Festival Lighting Designer

Now Seeking: New Works Festival Lighting Designer

Moonbox Productions is seeking Lighting Designers for our New Works Festival, performing June 20 – June 23, 2024 at the Boston Center for the Arts and Calderwood Pavilion. Designers may work collaboratively with multiple shows. 

BNWF 2024: Call for Readers

BNWF 2024: Call for Readers

Moonbox Production is seeking readers for its Fourth Annual Boston New Works Festival taking place at the Boston Center for the Arts in June 2025.

 

 

Moonbox is an Equal Opportunity Employer

We believe in creating spaces that reflect the diversity of our shared community, both on and off the stage, where under-represented voices, including BIPOC, LGBTQIA2S+, and people living with disabilities feel valued and important. Accessibility is a human right.  We are devoted to providing performances and work spaces that can be experienced and enjoyed universally, and to incorporating accessibility planning into our production, design, staffing, and budgeting processes from day one. #CreateCommunity More on our antiracism plan here. Please note, Moonbox Productions is an inclusive space. Our workplace is for everyone and we strongly encourage applicants that are BIPOC and LGBTQIA2S+ to apply. We welcome applicants of all ethnicities, races, gender identities and disabilities.

ACCESSIBILITY: 

Moonbox is committed to working with actors of all abilities and backgrounds. If you need assistance in submitting your audition (i.e., ASL interpretation or English captioning for Deaf or HoH artists, OCR text documents of sides for visually-impaired artists, or other accessibility services) please contact kacrumrine@gmail.com, our Director of Community and Accessibility Initiatives, as soon as possible.

COVID SAFETY: 

Per Moonbox Productions requirements, all performers must be able to provide proof of vaccination in order to participate in in-person rehearsals and performances. Our testing cadence and reporting policies and procedures are determined on a production-by-production basis as we assess the current public health climate. If you have any questions about COVID safety or COVID safety requirements, please contact our COVID Safety Manager and Production Manager, Kailey Bennett, at kbennett828@gmail.com.

DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION:

At Moonbox, we believe that the stories we tell are important. They sustain and preserve our community, our history, and our values. Telling racially diverse stories allows us not only to reflect – but also to reflect on – the complexities of our past. When we join together in the act of storytelling, we are united in ways that transcend the everyday. Together, we can use the power of storytelling to honor our commonalities, celebrate our differences, and address historical discrimination and injustice. We pledge to take this power seriously, and to use our voices and the stories we tell to dismantle the systemic racism and white supremacy engulfing our culture, our country, and our industry .We believe in creating spaces that reflect the diversity of our shared community, both on and off the stage, where under-represented voices, including BIPOC, LGBTQIA2S+, and people living with disabilities feel valued and important. We believe that accessibility is a human right.  We are devoted to providing performances and work spaces that can be experienced and enjoyed universally, and to incorporating accessibility planning into our production, design, staffing, and budgeting processes from day one. More on our antiracism plan here https://moonboxproductions.org/about/#antiracism #CreateCommunity