Anne Bogart

Doris Duke Artist Award, 2012

New York, NY

Anne Bogart is a Co-Artistic Director of the ensemble-based SITI Company, head of the MFA Directing program at Columbia University, and author of five formative books: A Director Prepares, The Viewpoints Book, And Then You Act, Conversations with Anne, and What’s the Story. With SITI, Bogart has directed more than 30 works in venues around the world, including Steel Hammer, The Theater is a Blank Page, Persians, A Rite, Café Variations, Radio Macbeth, American Document, bobrauschenbergamerica, and Hotel Cassiopeia. Her recent opera works include Verdi’s Macbeth, Bellini’s Norma, and Bizet’s Carmen. Her many awards and fellowships include three honorary doctorates (Cornish School of the Arts, Bard College and Skidmore College), a United States Artists Fellowship, a Guggenheim Fellowship, a Rockefeller/Bellagio Fellowship, and a Robert Rauschenberg Foundation Residency Fellowship.

  • Photo Credit: Craig Schwartz © 2011 J. Paul Getty Trust
  • Photo Credit: Shehab Hossain
    Bob (2012)
  • Photo Credit: Michael Brosilow
    Under Construction (2009)
  • Photo Credit: Michael Brosilow
    Who Do You Think You Are? (2008)
  • Anne Bogart- Radio Macbeth (2007):
    Radio Macbeth (2007)
  • bobrauschenbergamerica (2001)

What fuels your impulse to make creative work?

Making theatre, for me, is an antidote to the pain that I experience within me and the pain that I see around me. The intolerance, violence and unfairness that I perceive in the world makes me want to create an alternative. In the rehearsal room I am responsible for the politics of those engaged. I am able to forge an atmosphere, logic, and principles of a fictional world that I can propose as an alternative to the social system that we inhabit outside of the field of art. I am part of the creation of a model society. An ensemble enacts the ritual of a play together in real time, in the presence of the moment-to-moment co-authors of the event: the audience.

Perhaps I am not alone in the feeling that the first half of my career was fueled by revenge against my parents who I erroneously believed did not have confidence in me that I could accomplish anything in the world. The following phase of my career was fueled by revenge against the critics, especially the New York critics. Every time I am knocked down by a bad review, I am forced to find fresh strength to stand back up and go to bat again. The effort gives me courage and energy.