Once upon a time, sixteen years ago, playwright Ruby O'Gray dreamed of honoring women in theatre. Ms. O'Gray wanted to (1) acknowledge and award women who have contributed to the world of theatre and (2) showcase performances about women, directed by women and written by women.
Ms. O'Gray shared her idea with long time friend and director/event planner, Karen Moore, and the result was the first Women's Theatre Festival of Memphis held in August 2012 at The Circuit Playhouse, Playhouse on the Square and TheatreWorks in Memphis, TN.
Since its beginning in 2012, organized to recognize the contributions of women to theatre, WTFM has had an impressive array of talent that covered the contiguous USA. The festival gained international status with an Australian company’s entry in 2014.
WTFM is recognized by the State of Tennessee as a 501 (c) 3 not-for-profit charitable organization, and is spearheaded by a diverse committee of men and women.
Did you know that 63% of theater audiences are Women?
- Broadway shows written by women are 18% more profitable than shows written by men
- 20% of professional theater artists are women
- 17% of produced plays are written by women
- 16% of produced plays are directed by women
- 69% of theater ticket buyers are women
Women and projects of interest to women are greatly under-represented in theater. Despite the fact that great strides have been made in other fields, women continue to face enormous employment challenges in the arts.
Mission & Vision
The mission of WTFM is to provide educational and performance opportunities that represent women on a broader scale and to bring recognition to women who have contributed to the theatre over the years.
The vision of WTFM is to work in collaboration with theaters, artists and other professionals to increase opportunities for women in all aspects of the performing arts.
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