Organized and moderated by The Washington Post theatre critic Peter Marks, "The Summit" will take place in Monday nights in February and March.
The first panel will take place Feb. 17, featuring artistic directors. Participants include Michael Kahn of the Shakespeare Theatre Company, Ryan Rilette of Round House Theatre, Eric Schaeffer of Signature Theatre, Paul R. Tetreault of Ford's Theatre and Paata Tsikurishvili of Synetic Theater.
Stage, film and TV actress Helen Carey; Tom Story, of Shakespeare and Studio Theatre; Woolly Mammoth company member Kimberly Gilbert; Signature Theatre's Nova Y. Payton; and theatre and TV actor Richard Thomas will participate in a March 24 panel about actors.
"The Summit" will focus on playwrights and directors March 28, featuring Rachel Grossman, of dog & pony dc; David Muse, Studio Theatre artistic director and director of Tribes; frequent Woolly Mammoth director/playwright Robert O'Hara; Ari Roth, Theater J artistic director and author; and D.C.-area playwrights and members of Arena Stage's inaugural Playwrights' Arena collaborative writing group Norman Allen and Jacqueline E. Lawton.
Arena Stage artistic director Molly Smith approached Marks with the idea of creating a series of evenings that would focus on areas of concern to the American theatre and theatregoers. "Nothing is more stimulating to me than conversations with smart theatre people, and this feels like a great moment to talk about where Washington stands as a theatre town," Marks said in a statement.
Tickets for "The Summit" are free, but reservations are encouraged. Tickets can be reserved by calling (202) 488-3300 or visiting arenastage.org.