Frequently Asked Questions

Q. Where does American Ensemble perform?
A. Our next production will be at the Capital Hill Arts Workshop.

Q. Can I subscribe to American Ensemble Theater?
A. No. While we do have a "season of work," American Ensemble Theater's producing and business models are different from those at many theaters. We don't think we have a better model; we simply wish to remain flexible and learn from our audiences over time what is needed.

Q. How can I learn where and when American Ensemble Theater is presenting plays?
A. You can find our season on this web site, and you can also sign up for our email list serve. We will not give your email address to anyone or contact you too often. You can always remove your name from our list serve at any time.

Q. How can I support American Ensemble Theater?
A. We currently don't solicit or accept donations. The best way to support us is to come to our shows.

Q. If I work for American Ensemble Theater, will I be paid?
A. Yes, everyone who works with us is paid.

Q. Can I submit a play? How do I get to be a playwright in residence?
A. Not all the plays we produce are new. Rather than say "no" to 500 new playwright submissions a year, American Ensemble Theater says "yes" to at least one playwright by making them playwrights in residence. We don't accept play submissions at this time. Playwright in residence is by invitation.

Q. I'm an actor. How can I become a member of the ensemble or audition for a specific project?
A. Becoming a member of the ensemble requires working with us on several projects, as well as being uniquely right for our company. Unless requested, please don't send us your headshot and resume. To audition, go to the major auditions in the D.C. area including the League of Washington Theatres and the Actor's Center Lottery.

If you have other questions about American Ensemble Theater, please feel free to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it us.


Martin Blank

Martin Blank (Artistic Director) is the author of ten plays, most recently, his spy thriller The Law of Return was produced Off-Broadway at the Fourth Street Theater. He has received new play commissions from the Maryland State Arts Council, American Jewish Theater, and Georgetown Theatre Company, and his plays are published by AE Books and Smith and Kraus. He has served as Artistic Associate for the American Place Theatre, New York City, as well as Literary Manager, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company, and Founding Artistic Director, Theater J. He attended the University of Maryland and the Yale School of Drama. More at: MartinBlankAuthor.com

Ali Miller

Ali Miller (Managing Director) is a producer, director, and actor. Ms. Miller produced and co-directed the yearlong project How to Be a Human, which culminated in a critically acclaimed run at the 2010 Capital Fringe Festival. She has directed projects for Arena Stage's Community Engagement programs, Imagination Stage's Speak-Out on Stage Ensemble and Acting Conservatory, and Firebelly Productions. Ms. Miller is the Director in Residence at the South Asian Performing Arts Network and Institute. Most recently, she appeared in the staged reading of What Comes Next for American Ensemble Theater. Ms. Miller trained with The Atlantic Theater Company in Manhattan and holds a theatre degree from The College of William and Mary.

Cynthia Coogan

Cynthia Burns Coogan (Literary Manager) has worked in theatre, television and film and trained at the Alley Theatre, The Williamstown Theatre Festival, the British-American Drama Academy, and The Shakespeare Theatre. She worked at the Manhattan Theatre Club and for legendary theatrical impresario Alexander H. Cohen on Broadway and in the production of fundraisers for The Actors Fund of America at Radio City. She was Literary Associate at Arena Stage where she co-authored The Arena Adventure: The First Forty Years and was Resident Dramaturg at Theater J. She earned degrees from Georgetown and Marymount Universities.

Anthony van Eyck

Anthony van Eyck (Associate Artistic Director) studied acting in New York City with John Stix, in Los Angeles at the Beverly Hills Playhouse, and with David Shacker. As an actor, he has appeared in television and film as well as stage productions in Los Angeles and recently in the Washington, D.C. area, including A Walk in the Woods for American Ensemble Theater, Ph├Ędre for Arts United of Washington and understudy for Design for Living at the Shakespeare Theatre. He is the former editor of the Los Angeles edition of Celebrity Bulletin.


Jason Aufdem-Brinke (Resident Lighting Designer) Why Torture is Wrong, and the People Who Love Them, American Ensemble Theater; Cirque Voila's High Plains Tour, Alight Dance, Speechless; The Impressionable Players, Romeo & Juliet: Choose Your Own Ending; Flying V's Science Fiction Double Feature. As well as designs for Youthtopia, Imagination Stage; and As You Like It, Maryland Shakespeare Festival.

Lynly A. Saunders

Lynly A. Saunders (Resident Costume Designer) is a graduate of The University of California, Davis, with a B.A. in history. She is an assistant costume coordinator at the Washington National Opera. Her recent costume designs include House with Two Doors with Faction of Fools, and Johnny Meister and the Stitch with Solas Nua, A Walk in the Woods and Why Torture is Wrong, and the People Who Love Them for American Ensemble Theater.

Krista Cowan

Krista Cowan (Director in Residence) holds an MFA in Directing from the University of California at Irvine. She recently served as the Interim Artistic Director for Journeymen Theater Ensemble. She has worked for theaters including South Coast Repertory, Utah Shakespearean Festival, Opera Theater of Northern Virginia, Delvena Theatre Company, Wharf Rat Productions, The Attic Theatre, and Yellow Taxi Productions, among others. Directing credits include The Miser, Caucasian Chalk Circle, Mad Forest, Endgame, The House of Bernarda Alba, The Crucible, The Glass Menagerie, The Bald Soprano, the opera Pinocchio, and, most recently, A Walk in the Woods for American Ensemble Theater.

Our mission is to present an eclectic mix of American plays with low-cost tickets. To seek out and perform what the playwright intended. To create a safe and joyous ensemble in which theater artists can thrive.
In sum, to serve a play, its artists, and the public.


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