People often refer to women in their 40s and beyond as “women of a certain age,” but was does that even mean? The Free Dictionary says «a certain age» is a phrase «used to avoid saying that a person, usually a woman, is no longer young but is not yet old.” At Out of Box Theatre, these “women of a certain age” are the playwrights and actors who will fill the stage in Women’s Shorts opening January 12th.
Inspired by the Jo Howarth Noonan Foundation’s first Mojo Fest in 2017, Artistic Director Carolyn Choe wanted to bring a full production of these short plays to the stage. The Jo Howarth Noonan Foundation is a new non-profit organization dedicated to promoting and celebrating female theater artists over the age of forty. It was created in memory of Jo Howarth, a respected and beloved actor in Atlanta (who appeared on the OOB stage in 2015 in Doubt.) The foundation that bears her name works to create more opportunities for women to remain vital forces in theater, bringing their talent, experience, and wisdom to audiences and theater companies across the country. The primary focus is commissioning new works with substantial roles for older women, while hosting events to facilitate networking and career development in the spirit of Jo’s own journey.
“As a women over forty myself, I know there is more to a good story when you take advantage of the talents of these playwrights and actors and bring them all together at the same time in the same place,” says Choe. Women’s Shorts features nine 10-minute plays that are funny, touching, dramatic and complex and while they were written by women, for women actors, they encompass so more more than stories ABOUT women over forty. “They are just great stories everyone will enjoy,” says Choe. “As I read recently in an article on the Sydney Morning Herald website, ‘We just need to rethink what it means to be a certain age. A certain wisdom, a certain comfort, a certain sexuality, a certain something. Growing more certain, not less.’ I think that says it all.”
Women’s Shorts runs January 12th — 20th. Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at 8 PM and Sundays at 3 PM. Out of Box Theatre is located in the Artisan Resource Center at 585 Cobb Pkwy S, Marietta, 30060. Tickets are $15 and can be purchased online at outofboxtheatre.com or by calling 678-653-4605. For more information on the Jo Howarth Noonan Foundation and the Mojo Fest of 2018, visit @JHNFoundation on Facebook.