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Rick Stevens of the Culture Project (far right) with presenters Franceli Chapman and Lenora Fulani

2005 Recipient - The Culture Project

The Culture Project (TCP), was founded in 1996 in a piano restoration factory on West 96th Street in New York City by its current producing artistic director, Allan Buchman. By 2000, TCP had raised $3 million and converted a lumberyard at 45 Bleecker Street into a two-theatre performing arts center. The mission of the Culture Project is to create artistic works relevant to our times, emphasizing the creation of new plays and nurturing the growth of emerging artists. In 2001, TCP commissioned its first play, The Exonerated, about wrongly imprisoned death row inmates. It ran for 18 months at the 45 Bleecker Theatre, had a 10-month national tour, and was made into a movie by Court TV with Brian Dennehy, Susan Sarandon, Danny Glover and Aidan Quinn. This summer The Exonerated will be featured at the Edinburgh Theatre Festival, and it will open this fall in London. A frequent recipient of Obie, Lucille Lortel, Drama Desk, and Outer Critics Circle Awards for artistic excellence, TCP has also produced such political works as Sarah Jones' Bridge & Tunnel, Guantanamo: Honor Bound to Defend Freedom, and Belfast Blues.