One year after Alley Repertory Theater announced it would be partitioning its programming into three ambitious pillars—Alley Mainstage, Alley New Works and Alley Underground—the company’s founders have opted to go their separate ways.
“We decided to leave at the very beginning of August,” said Alley Rep co-founder Hollis Welsh, former director of Alley New Works. “Basically, we just saw an opportunity to go in a different direction.”
Welsh and partner Nick Garcia, former director of Alley Underground, split ways with Alley Rep’s other co-founder Buffie Main, director of Alley Mainstage, on amicable terms.
“Nick and I both had an independent show we were doing, mine is called Killadelphia, and I went ahead and took that show with me,” said Welsh. “I’m going to be producing that with the Linen Building in October and Nick is remounting [pun intended] Sex AKA Wieners and Boobs in December.”
While Killadelphia and Sex will be produced independently, Welsh and Garcia are in the process of hammering out a name for their new theater/production company.
“We were really inspired when Michael Kaiser came to town; we really took to heart what he was saying about putting in the time, ahead of time, to strategically develop shows and programs and to do institutional marketing as well as show marketing,” explained Welsh. “So, we just thought we’ll put on these independent shows but take our time to put together a lasting sustainable company that resonates with us artistically.”
This new company, according to Welsh, will differ from what Alley Rep in a number of ways.
“We’re mostly looking at doing new works and new approaches to traditional theater and doing those around the city in site-specific locations in various theaters and houses and venues,” said Welsh. “So, rather than being a resident theater company, per se, we’ll be an independent company that kind of shows up all over town.”
Welsh’s now-independent production of Killadelphia, Mixtape For a City—a one-man-play written by and starring Sean Christopher Lewis that addresses soaring murder rates in Philadelphia—will open at the Linen Building at 7:30 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 11, and run through Thursday, Oct. 21.