Highlights from BNTC History
2005 – Artistic Director, Kara Saunders makes a request to present a play at a local theatre festival. The response from the festival committee is, “I’m sorry, individual directors are not allowed to submit plays. Only established theatre companies can make presentations.” Kara asks, “What constitutes an established theatre company?” To which the committee chairman (who perhaps is secretly on the side of the under-dog) replies, “Theatre companies pay ten more dollars in dues.” Kara reaches for her checkbook and states, “I’m a theatre company.” Several members of the committee shift uneasily in their seats and begin whispering to the committee chairman who considers their objections and turns to Kara to ask, “What is the name of your company?” Without pausing for reflection the new Artistic Director states firmly, “The Brand New Theatre Co.” Thus BNTC is born.
2005 – BNTC’s inaugural production, the world premier of David Ive’s newest play, Roll over Beethoven, is presented in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
2006 – BNTC’s artistic director gets her first opportunity to head up a devising project when she is hired to present the entertainment at the BAMA Pie Company party. The writing is trite, the performers can’t be heard above the din of employee conversation and no one involved in the project makes more than $30. However, everyone gets a free dinner. Thus, BNTC’s artistic director decides that the art of collaborative theatre creation is to become a regular aspect of BNTC’s programming.
2007 – Actor Training becomes one of BNTC’s primary functions and BNTC begins producing professional improvised theatre and student showcases on a monthly basis.
2008 – Crayons Improv (produced regularly by BNTC) is named “Tulsa’s Best Improv Group” by Tulsa People Magazine and BNTC starts offering ongoing interactive workshops with local playwrights.
2009 – BNTC goes on hiatus when Artistic Director, Kara Saunders, moves to London to pursue master’s studies in Actor Training and Coaching at on of the UK’s top theatre training institutions, The University of London: Royal Central School of Speech and Drama.
2010 – 2013 – BNTC opens a studio in Austin, Tx where writers and actors collaborate to produce new writing.
2013 – 2014 – BNTC’s artistic director returns to her hometown in Tulsa, Ok to offer world class actor training and consultation to collaborative theatre/film artists.
2022 – After several years of hiatus (due, at first to health issues experienced by BNTC’s Artistic Director, then a continued dormancy as a result of the pandemic) BNTC returns to the Fly Loft in Tulsa, Oklahoma to offer actor training for adults. As the community continues to recover from the impact of Covid, BNTC looks forward to expanding class offerings and creative opportunities for writers and filmmakers.