International and online: The New Works Playhouse

We talked to Robert Kodama, Founder and Artistic Director of The New Works Playhouse, a global community of performers and writers striving to support each other through bringing theatre online.

About your company: Tell us a bit about The New Works Playhouse. What does the company stand for? What sort of things do you produce? Why? What are you working on at the moment?

The New Works Playhouse has been set up to try and make the performing arts industry more accessible to those who might have difficulties getting their foot in the door, whether it's due to their financial situation, gender, ethnicity, or any other unnecessary barrier that might be put in front of them instead of looking at the talent someone has. I (Robert) certainly faced those barriers constantly in the industry and it pushed me to try and set something up where we thrive to break those barriers down and give everyone a fair opportunity to join us and produce new productions. 

How does sustainability come into your practice?  We are currently based solely on an online platform which reduces the need to travel, tour, and use up resources in a theatre space. To combat both the sustainability issue with financial constraints our members might be facing, we also do not place a heavy focus on high-quality recording equipment. This will help support our performers financially in that they are not disadvantaged because they do not possess expensive equipment, but also prevents the culture o