(Bio as of March 2022)
Woolly Mammoth Theatre creates badass theater that highlights the stunning, challenging and tremendous complexity of our world. For over 40 years, Woolly has maintained a high standard of artistic rigor while simultaneously daring to take risks, innovate and push beyond perceived boundaries. Co-led by Artistic Director Maria Manuela Goyanes and Managing Director Emika Abe, Woolly is located in Washington, DC, equidistant from the Capitol Building and the White House. This unique location influences Woolly’s investment in actively working towards an equitable, participatory and creative democracy.
One of the few remaining theatres in the country to maintain a company of artists, Woolly serves as an essential research and development role within the American theater. Plays premiered here have gone on to productions at hundreds of theatres all over the world and have had lasting impacts on the field. These include the world premiere productions of Danai Gurira’s Eclipsed in 2009 that later went on to be the first Broadway play with a cast and creative team of all Black women; Bruce Norris’ Pulitzer-Prize Winner Clybourne Park in 2010 and Anne Washburn’s Mr. Burns: a post-electric play in 2012. Woolly produces theatre beyond our building by sending productions like Aaron Posner’s Stupid Fucking Bird across the nation and bringing Aleshea Harris’s What to Send Up When It Goes Down to neighborhoods throughout DC. A national tour of Madeline’s Sayet’s Where We Belong will launch in 2021. In addition, Woolly was the first to pioneer Pay-What-You-Will tickets in the DMV, which are now available at every single performance.
Woolly Mammoth acknowledges that the theater stands upon occupied, unceded territory: the ancestral homeland of the Nacotchtank whose descendants belong to the Piscataway peoples. Furthermore, the foundation of this city, and most of the original buildings in Washington, DC, were funded by the sale of enslaved people of African descent and built by their hands. Understanding that history and context, Woolly values building relationships with neighbors and resident artists in the DMV area. Our nationally-acclaimed Connectivity Department is one of the ways we accomplish this by linking Woolly to like-minded community organizations in order to generate mutually beneficial, impactful and power-aware partnerships.