About Oasis

 
 



Oasis Theater Company was founded in 1994 at the House of Pies in the third booth from the left.  In the years since that inauspicious beginning, the company has gained critical acclaim for its theatrical productions and groundbreaking training symposia.  


Oasis first put itself on the map in 1995 in New York with a sold-out adaptation of Gilbert & Sullivan’s The Grand Duke.  Later that year, Oasis produced a site-specific On the Verge outdoors in front of the Pacific Design Center in West Hollywood.  In 1996, the company was invited to join the World Shakespeare Congress Festival at the Los Angeles Theater Center.  The resulting hit, Measure for Measure:  If It Don’t Fit You Must Acquit, enjoyed an acclaimed, sold-out run.  In the next two seasons, Oasis produced six productions including A Rich Inner Life, Life in the Turn Lane, The Chekhov Project, The Truth About Me, The Name of the Bar is Heaven and Duel


In 1998, Oasis brought world-renowned director Anne Bogart and her revolutionary International Theater Institute (SITI) to Los Angeles for the first time.  That summer, 100 artists from across Los Angeles and the nation, came together for Framework ’98:  The SITI Intensives at L.A.T.C.  Oasis hoped that Bogart’s ensemble training techniques would help build a community of theater artists with a shared vocabulary, and therefore strove for the greatest range of diversity among workshop participants.  Through a generous collaboration with A.S.K. Theater Projects and the Flintridge Foundation, Oasis created a scholarship program enabling artists of all economic backgrounds to participate. Backstage West called the resulting symposium "an event of such scale and depth—a small earthquake of creativity, whose aftershocks are still rippling through a number of Southland theaters." 


The following year, Oasis did it again with Framework ’99.


Also in the summer of ’99, Oasis premiered Leon Martell’s Bea[u]tiful in the Extreme in A.S.K. Theater Projects’ Common Ground Festival.  In the 2000 Edge of the World Festival, Oasis produced a workshop adaptation of Sophocles’ Antigone. This raucous adaptation, Antigone. Tertiary. Sexxx, enjoyed a six-week, sold-out run in January/February 2001.  In 2002, Oasis presented the world premiere of Leon Martell & Penka Kouneva’s STEEL: John Henry and the Shaker, a new musical based on the legend of steel-drivin’ man John Henry. Honored by 2 Ovation awards, (Michael A. Shepperd as Lead Actor in a Musical and Jerry Browning for Lighting Design) the show proved a critical success. In 2004, Oasis commissioned a rock-adaptation of the original score from Gilbert and Sullivan’s The Grand Duke by David O and presented the resulting DUEL! to enthusiastic audiences.


Over the past few years, Oasis has co-produced Ameenah Kaplan’s multimedia extravaganza, Everyman for Himself which led the LA Weekly to proclaim, “Ameenah Kaplan puts a new, personal spin on the tale of Everyman, brilliantly combining dance, spoken word, music, pantomime, Kali stick fighting, acrobatics, con­tortionists, aerialists and the Afro-Brazilian martial art of capoeira. Strong design elements...complement the extraordinary precision and discipline of the cast.”


We couldn’t agree more.

HISTORY