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Studio Theatre records

 Collection 0146-SCPA

Founded in 1978 through collaboration between artistic director Joy Zinoman, designer Russell Metheny, and arts advocate Virginia Crawford, The Studio Theatre has grown into a premiere cultural organization of Washington D.C. With four performance spaces, a partnership with the Acting Conservatory, and numerous community outreach programs, Studio Theatre is able to deliver a diverse array of special events, performances, and professional and educational training. The Studio Theatre records contain the professional materials of The Studio Theatre, such as financial documents, production materials, renovation and expansion documents, board minutes and information, awards, press materials, and photographs as well as pre-Studio and personal materials of the founding members.


  • 1975-2010
  • Majority of material found within 1975-2010

Use and Access to Collection

There are no restricted files in this collection.

Duplication and Copyright Information

Materials from this collection must be used in the Michelle Smith Performing Arts Library's Irving and Margery Morgan Lowens Special Collections Room, 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, Monday through Friday. Please make an appointment with the curator:


168.00 Linear Feet

440 Megabytes

Scope and Content of Collection

The records contain materials ranging in date from 1975-2010. Materials include production files, financial documents, legal documents, correspondence, datebooks, programs, public relations and press materials, CDs and photographs, set and light design plots, and renovation information including floor, tile, carpet, and paint samples.

Administrative History

The Studio Theatre (TST) began in 1978 as a collaboration between Artistic Director Joy Zinoman and Designer Russell Metheny, with the support of arts advocate Virginia Crawford. Prior to the beginning of TST, Metheny and Zinoman had worked together on successful productions for Washington's West End Theatre. The Studio Theatre strives to produce plays that focus on interaction between actor and audience and thus has used intimate performance spaces since its founding.

In the late 1980s, two more production divisions were introduced: The Studio 2ndStage and Special Events. As additions to TST's subscription season, Special Events showcases works by performing artists without other performance opportunities in D.C. while The Studio 2ndStage produces plays which often push the boundaries of more conservative theater.

In 1992, TST launched its Campaign to Secure the Future, an ambitious 3.5 million dollar undertaking to expand the physical space of the theatre and contribute to the revitalization of the 14th Street corridor. This successful project added two stages, numerous classrooms, and confirmed the ongoing expansion of TST's impact. Further renovations were completed between 2002 and 2006, improving accessibility and technological aspects of the building. Today, the Studio Theatre maintains an active relationship with the 14th street community, offering free and affordable options for low income residents, as well as building partnerships with various community and youth organizations.


This collection is organized into five series.

  1. Founders
  2. Board of Trustees
  3. Studio Theatre administration
  4. Acting conservatory
  5. Production records

Custodial History and Acquisition Information

Materials were received in three deliveries from The Studio Theatre marked 11-15-TST, 11-59-TST, and 11-104-TST. Additional accruals are anticipated.

Related Material

- James J. Taylor Collection of the Washington Area Performing Arts Video Archive, Special Collections in Performing Arts, University of Maryland Libraries. (finding aid)

- Studio Theatre (official website)

- Don Hamerman collection of performing arts photography, Special Collections in Performing Arts, University of Maryland Libraries. (Portrait of Joy Zinoman, c. 1978)

Subject Guide to holdings related to Theatre

More than 50 titles in the WAPAVA collection were recorded at the Studio Theatre and are accessible to anyone. They can be viewed by bringing the related call number (WAP#) to the front desk at UMD's Michelle Smith Performing Arts Library, where you will be provided the DVD and a space to view it.

Processing Information

This collection was originally appraised, selected, and described on site at Studio Theatre first by Kelly Smith and then by Mary Crauderueff, with subsequent description and archival processing performed at SCPA. Electronic records were imaged to UMD’s B Drive in November 2016 by Amy Wickner, with description by Novara.

Studio Theatre records
Lisa Rodio, Amanda Weeks, Vincent Novara, Mary Crauderueff, Kelly Smith, Leahkim Gannett, July 2011 and ongoing
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English

Library Details

Part of the Michelle Smith Performing Arts Library

University of Maryland Libraries
8270 Alumni Drive
College Park MD 20742 United States