Two Key D.C. Theater Benefactors: the Meads and the Kogods

Sunday, September 26, 2010; E05

In the 1970s only a dozen theater groups produced professional work in the Washington region. Today Washington can no longer be called a cultural backwater. About 70 companies, large and small, contribute to a wide variety of theater offerings. That growth couldn't have happened without Jaylee Mead and the late Gilbert Mead, and Arlene and Robert Kogod. Their major donations:

Jaylee and Gilbert Mead (1930-2007)

-- Arena Stage at Mead Center for American Theater: a complex of three theaters, offices and theater-related spaces (before renovation simply called Arena Stage)

-- Mead Theater: a 200-plus seat theater, opened in 1987 on 14th Street NW, at Studio Theatre, which specializes in contemporary plays.

-- Mead Theater Lab: space and support for experimental new work at Flashpoint on G Street NW.

-- Mead Lobby: a 4,300-square-foot space opened in 2007 at Signature Theatre, in Arlington, and named for the late Rob Mead, Gilbert's son.

Arlene and Robert Kogod

-- Robert and Arlene Kogod Courtyard: a 28,000-square-foot covered space, opened in 2007, between National Portrait Gallery and American Art Museum. (Entire complex is named Donald W. Reynolds Center for American Art and Portraiture, on F Street NW.)

-- Kogod Cradle: a 200-seat flexible space for new plays at Arena Stage.

-- Kogod Lobby: Studio Theatre's main lobby, opened in 2004.

-- Kogod House: four-apartment residences for visiting staff, opened in 2006 for Studio Theatre.

-- Arlene and Robert Kogod Center for the Arts: classroom building with 465-seat theater, opened in 1982, at Sidwell Friends School.

-- Robert & Arlene Kogod Theater: 200-seat flexible space, opened in 2001 at the Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center at University of Maryland.

-- The ARK Theatre: 110-seat flexible space, opened in 2006, at Signature Theatre.

(Also: Kogod School of Business: classroom building, named in 1979, at American University.) -- Jacqueline Trescott

Post a Comment

Comments that include profanity or personal attacks or other inappropriate comments or material will be removed from the site. Additionally, entries that are unsigned or contain "signatures" by someone other than the actual author will be removed. Finally, we will take steps to block users who violate any of our posting standards, terms of use or privacy policies or any other policies governing this site. Please review the full rules governing commentaries and discussions. You are fully responsible for the content that you post.

© 2010 The Washington Post Company