Founded by Jennifer Pias and Robert Spahr in February of 1995, at 85 Ludlow St. NYC, the critically acclaimed theatre company produced numerous productions in its "Storefront Theatre." As the co-founder of Expanded Arts, I directed many plays, among my favorites were William Shakespeare's; "King Lear", "Macbeth" & "Midsummer Night's Dream"; Jean Genet's, "The Balcony"; Howard Brenton's, "Christie in Love"; an original adaptation of several Edgar Allen Poe's "Short Stories" (for Halloween); an original adaptation of Charles Dicken's, "A Christmas Carol", (my ghost of Christmas past had 200 blinking christmas tree lights sewn into his costume and he carried his own extension cord); Euripide's, "Medea"; an original adaptation of Lewis Carroll's, "Alice in Wonderland"; Bertolt Brecht's, "The Elephant Calf" and Eugene Ionesco's, "The Lesson."
The successful off-broadway "Shakespeare's R&J" was first produced by Expanded Arts in September of 1997. It was the longest running Romeo & Juliet in the history of Broadway.
"94 plays in 94 days"
Every summer Expanded Arts produced "94 plays in 94 days" the marathon production of original plays presented over the 94 days of summer!
Shakespeare in the Park(ing) Lot
Since it's very first summer, Expanded Arts presented "Free Shakespeare in the Park(ing) Lot" in the Municipal Lot across the street from the theatre. Later Expanded Arts was hired by the Hudson River Park Conservancy to present Free Shakespeare on the west side piers of Manhattan.