719 East St Clair Street
Indianapolis, IN 46202

Divafest History and Purpose:

DivaFest is a juried playwrighting festival presented by IndyFringe. Nationally, only 19% of published plays have been written by women. We have been working to change that over the past 10 years.

Why this matters:

50/50 is still a long ways off

According to a survey by American Theatre magazine, just 21% of plays presented by regional theater companies in the 2015-16 season had female authors. In the magazine's 2017 survey, they reported that the number had increased to 26%. The most recent article said, "Plays authored by men constituted 57 percent of all productions, down from 62 percent last year, and plays by women comprise 30 percent, up from last year's 26 (plays co-written by men and women take up the slack, this year comprising 13 percent)."

How is IndyFringe doing?

DivaFest now has featured 159 female playwrights since 2010 who have shared in $100K of box office receipts. 10% of the DivaFest playwrights were African American. 20 shows went through further development and performed during the IndyFringe Festival.

Over ten years, DivaFest has fostered the growth of new works, new audiences, new performing companies, and new Fringe festival shows. 45% of all entries received for the annual IndyFringe Festival in 2020 were from women.

The importance of DivaFest:

- Develop and present voices not often heard as well as showcase the work of established voices.
- Help new playwrights learn the processes of play production: write the play, pass jury for acceptance, work with production team, market and evaluate.
- Engage new and established audiences in the art and craft of production
- Bring new excitement to theatre and grow DivaFest as a center for Indiana women playwrights.
- Attract regional and national media coverage

We wish to recognize the contribution of Rita Kohn and Marion Garmel for their untiring service to women playwrights.

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