Rough & Tumble
theatre that doesn't suck.

  "Imaginative staging and
a sweet sense of humor"
-- The Boston Phoenix
"Wonderfully satisfying"
-- The Boston Herald
"Bursting with enthusiasm and
hilarious physical comedy."
-- The South End News
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Rough & Tumble is a ten year-old theatre company that has made a name for itself in Boston for its inventive physical comedy and bold theatricality. The company develops original works, produces new plays by Boston playwrights, and stages guerilla theater events around Boston (such as an elaborate chase scene through the Boston Public Library and a playfully bizarre tour along the Freedom Trail).

About Rough & Tumble    

The lofty goal at Rough & Tumble is to make theater that people will actually enjoy. We also want to find ways to get people who don't normally come out for theater to give it a go. We hope they like it so much they keep coming. Ours is a two-pronged attack:

1. make good theater
2. make cheap theater

Rough & Tumble has worked at theaters all over Boston, performed to great acclaim at the Boston Theatre Marathon, and toured to the New York International Fringe Festival.

Oh, and also...

Maybe It's Time To Burn The Theatre to The Ground and Start Over


We're Not Experimental... As Far As You Know


A Rough & Tumble Manifesto

Being "alternative" isn't itself our goal. We want to be different than more "traditional" theaters because we think most "traditional" theater is boring, pretentious and alienating. Our stuff rarely has "a concept" and absolutely never has a political statement to make. Political theatre bores us to tears. We think message theater is an excuse not to have to make very good art-- quality doesn't matter because it's "important." Blech. We may put a character on rollerblades (and we have done) but why on earth would anyone care what we have to say about capitalism. And we have too much respect for our audience to try to scare, alienate or preach to them.

Our stuff looks different, is outside the norm, linear narrative, realistic, method/classical stuff because we are looking for new, more alive ways to engage and exhilarate our audience. If that means setting up a bedroom on the Boston Common: OK. If that means creating a show with no spoken dialogue: right-on. If that means adapting a movie script for the stage: brilliant. We love a creative challenge because it's fun, and it presents opportunities to give our audiences glittering moments of awareness. We experiment with the form for the sake of what we create, not for the sake of experimenting.

Our motto is "Theater That Doesn't Suck" because we think most theater does suck. If we could call what we do something other than "plays" and "theater" without confusing people, we'd do it. Most theater is talky, bland, self-important and preaching to the choir. Most theater ignores completely what is unique and exciting about the form. We want to make theater that is more like seeing a great rock concert: dizzying and exhilarating and euphoric and communal and there's a chance you might get laid. And we don't think that's experimental, as much as we think that's what theater should be like, and everyone who isn't trying for that is doing it wrong.