And the envelope says…

Lynn Nottage wins her second Pulitzer for SWEAT, a play commissioned and premiered by the Oregon Shakespeare Festival.

We’ve known for a few years now, but this really drives it home:  Oregon (Ashland, Oregon, to be specific) has become one of the great theatre centers of the world.

And for this thinly populated, outdoorsy, literary, rain-soaked, snow-capped, sun-bleached Northwestern state, all the world’s a stage.

Think about that.  How unlikely it was way back in 1935.  How preposterous it would have sounded that little Ashland, Oregon was going to be up there on the top shelf of world drama.

Oregon Shakespeare Festival
Broadway beneath the Siskiyou. Ashland, Oregon.

How did this happen?  It’s the vision thing.  OSF decided to be a force in the American theatre.  To be a force in American life.

Instead of mounting the same tired retreads that circulate lifelessly through regional theatres, they decided to do something different.  They decided to go the other way.  To do new and important work that would go from the periphery (with apologies to the Rogue Valley) to the center.

They nailed it.  Bigly.  Perhaps the ball they hit out of the park will be discovered rolling around on some xenomorph-infested planet in the upcoming ALIEN: COVENANT release.  But that thing is gone, daddy, gone.

This is the model for any theatre that wants to be more than a franchise, an outlet, a provincial outpost in a numbing colonial system, one step away from financial ruin.

Time to saddle up and cowboy up.

Because the world is waiting for #MadeInOregon.