Voices of Now (VON) is a program that devises autobiographical plays with ensembles of middle-school, high-school and adult artists. VON plays are fast-paced, collaboratively written, physical theater pieces that pose challenging social questions relevant to the artists and their communities. The plays investigate those questions through poetry, movement and the recounting of the artists’ personal stories.
Originally created to work with one local middle school, the program has expanded to serve hundreds of students in the DC Metro area and beyond. One of the primary goals of the program is to create positive change within the artists’ communities by engaging in dialogue centered on young people’s daily experiences of their world.
take the stage
Learn more about local Voices of Now ensembles and Voices of Now ensembles around the world.
Become a Voices of Now artist
Actors' Tools Workshops
To qualify to be a Voices of Now ensemble member, artists participate in a series of workshops introducing them to the actor's tools: movement, vocal expression, teamwork and creative writing. Upon completion, participating artists are eligible to audition to be cast in a Voices of Now ensemble.
Create an Ensemble
Groups of 8-20 artists create an original play to be performed in their own community and at Arena Stage as a part of the Voices of Now Festival. Rehearsals may be held at school, in an organization's private space and/or at Arena Stage.
Exploring Grief with the Wendt Center for Loss and Healing
Voices of Now: An Inside Look
Voices of Now: International
Voices of Now is available to middle, high school and community groups of eight or more. Group leaders and performers can learn more by contacting
Community Engagement Partnerships Manager Medha Marsten
Voices of Now is made possible by support from DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities, Harman Family Foundation, Hattie M. Strong Foundation, GEICO, Rockwell Collins, Friends of Southwest D.C., Toni A. Ritzenberg and the Weissberg Foundation. Additional support for the program is provided by the U.S. Department of State.