WIT affected by lease closing, now looking for a new home

Washington Improv Theater (WIT) is looking for a new home for its classes, programming and live performances. After learning of an unexpected lease termination this week, WIT will move out of his 14-year-old home in Sources Theater (1835 14th Street, NW) in late August. Source Theater is owned by CulturalDC.

WIT, which will celebrate its 25th anniversary in 2023, has used Source’s black box theater as its main venue for live performances, including the annual Fighting Improv Smackdown tournament, the weekly Harold Night series, and a myriad of other shows. As of July 2021, Source also housed WIT’s primary classroom spaces. WIT’s courses enrolled more than 1,700 people before the pandemic and fosters a vibrant creative community in DC. After weathering the pandemic, WIT was rebuilding its education and live performance programs when news of the termination hit.

“When we received the lease termination, I was stunned. But I know the WIT staff, board and community are resilient and flexible, so I’m excited to see how we’re turning this into a positive” , says Mark Chalfant, Artistic/Executive Director of WIT, “I’m looking forward to seeing how we can bring improvisation to new communities. We look forward to forging new relationships and partnerships to further our mission to use improvisation.” improvisation to make DC a more connected and joyful place.

WIT engages its community and the general public in the search for performance spaces, classroom spaces and administrative spaces, ideally close to each other, but potentially separated.

This includes:

  • Find references to people who manage spaces in the District. WIT collects responses on two forms: one for Classes and one for performances. These forms include specifications on exactly what WIT is looking for (the entire campaign is encapsulated in this PDF). If you run a space yourself and want to talk about working with WIT, you can email [email protected] directly.
  • Talk to WIT to sponsor a space. WIT is open to great conversations about new partnerships. If you are an individual arts supporter or represent a corporation that wants to make a bold impact in the community, WIT would like to talk to you about the opportunities. Email Mark Chalfant directly at [email protected]

Currently, WIT hosts classes at locations including the Universalist National Memorial Church, Atlas Performing Arts Center, DC Arts Center, and Project Create. WIT has historically scheduled performances at venues including the DC Arts Center, Atlas Performing Arts Center, Studio 1469, and Anacostia Arts Center.

WIT has been a resident company at CulturalDC’s Source Theater since 2008. Serial and Constellation Theater Company are also resident companies at the Source. In 2016, CulturalDC has sold the Flashpoint Arts Space, which housed Flashpoint Gallery, Mead Theater Lab and Dallas Morse Coors Dance Studio.

More information about WIT:

Logo design by Caroline Brickell

Washington Improv Theater is dedicated to sharing the creative and collaborative power of improvisation in DC. WIT is DC’s premier arts organization presenting and advancing the art form of improvisational theater with more than 200 performers, 30 instructors, 1,000 students and 14,000 spectators participating in performances and classes each year. WIT is a multi-level arts organization: a production organization exploring and transmitting the art of long-form improvisation in exciting new directions; a community organization serving a growing family of improv artists. WIT is the place for improv in DC. witdc.org, @WITimprov

‘(y) Our Town’ at WIT has all the fun and all the thrill
(reviewed by John Stoltenberg)

CulturalDC takes issue with how WIT lost its lease at the Source Theater (March 18, 2022, reporting by Nicole Hertvik)

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