Theater J is a nationally-renowned, professional theater that celebrates, explores, and struggles with the complexities and nuances of both the Jewish experience and the universal human condition.
Our work illuminates and examines: ethical questions of our time, inter-cultural experiences that parallel our own, and the changing landscape of Jewish identities. As the nation’s largest and most prominent Jewish theater, we aim to preserve and expand a rich Jewish theatrical tradition and to create community and commonality through theater-going experiences.
Theater J draws audiences from all eight wards of the District, as well as Maryland and Virginia, and reflects the diverse residents of the metropolitan DC region including both Jewish and non-Jewish professionals, African-Americans, Arab-Americans, Asians, Hispanics, the LGBTQ community, students, and senior citizens. Theater J is committed to creating partnerships that deepen our connections to our community. Through our Passports Free Ticket Program, we provide over 400 free tickets to senior citizens, clients of homeless and women’s shelters, and students throughout DC every season, reaching populations that are historically underserved by arts organizations.
Theater J has been honored with the DC Mayor’s Arts Award for Excellence in an Artistic Discipline, over 70 Helen Hayes nominations and nine Helen Hayes Awards. Notable productions include: Dan O’Brien’s The Body of an American, winner of the 2014 Horton Foote Prize for Outstanding New American Play; the world-premiere of Caleen Sinnette Jennings’ Queens Girl in the World; and Tony Kushner’s The Intelligent Homosexual’s Guide to Capitalism and Socialism with a Key to the Scriptures.
Our building sits on the traditional homeland of the Nacotchtank (Anacostan), farmers and traders who lived along the banks of the Anacostia River. Beginning in 1608, European settlers decimated the Nacotchtank with disease, warfare, and forced removal. By the 1700s, the survivors fled to join other tribes to the north, south, and west, including the Piscataway Peoples, who continue to steward these lands from generation to generation. We know this acknowledgement is only a small step towards justice, and we ask that all of us learn about the past and present, and invest in the future of our country’s Indigenous communities wherever we are.
Theater J and the Edlavitch DCJCC commit to being an inclusive, safe, and welcoming space for all. This institution does not tolerate discrimination or harassment based on race, color, religion (creed), gender, gender expression, age, national origin, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or military status, in any of its activities or operations from either patrons or staff.
As the nation’s largest and most prominent Jewish theater, we aim to preserve and expand a rich Jewish theatrical tradition and to create community and commonality through theater-going experiences. Join us in our mission today.