The Bridge Initiative: Women in Theatre incubates and celebrates professional female theatre artists, promoting gender parity across all theatrical disciplines.
The Bridge Initiative: Women in Theatre is Arizona’s contribution to the national conversation around equal representation and inclusion. To this end, we:
- Produce work by female writers
- Provide paid opportunities and hire female practitioners for positions on and offstage
- Engage with the media to promote dialogue on issues of gender parity
- Build bridges between underrepresented groups and majority stakeholders
- Partner with other theatre companies locally and nationally
- Host conversations that address women’s issues as well as gender parity in thefield
- Invite undergraduate students to participate as interns and aud
- Empower emerging and established local female artists to attain leadership positions
- Remain open to unanticipated projects that will widen our inclusivity and reach
- Education & Lifelong Learning
Brenda Jean Foley (Co-Producing Artistic Director) moved to Tempe from New York City with her husband, Brian, who completed his MFA in Directing at ASU, and daughter, Robyn. Brenda has performed with iTheatre Collaborative (By the Way, Meet Vera Stark and Love Disorder), AC/TC (Now.Here.This.), Mesa Encore Theatre (Carousel, August: Osage County and The Full Monty, Zoni nom), the Don Bluth Front Row Theatre (The Sound of Music), and readings with Stray Cat and Class 6. She started a popular monthly play-reading series with Mesa Encore Theatre. Previously, Brenda performed off- and off-off-Broadway, on tour, in regional theatre, and internationally. She founded a theatre company, the Cockeyed Optimists, who were the first to revive John Cariani’s Almost, Maine in NYC. Also a writer, her screenplays have placed in national contests, and she wrote the book and contributed lyrics to an original musical, To Find Happy, which was part of the Emerging Artists Theatre New Works Festival in 2013. She has a BFA in Musical Theatre and a BA in English from the University of Michigan.
Tracy Liz Miller (Co-Producing Artistic Director) teaches Acting and Cinema Studies at Chandler-Gilbert Community College as well as pursuing freelance acting and directing projects. She continues to serve as an Associate Producer of Vermont Shakespeare Company in development, strategic planning, and consulting. She most recently played Titania/Hippolyta in FairyWorlds! with Southwest Shakespeare Company. Directing: How the World Began, for WAMTheatre of Western Mass; The 12 Dates of Christmas with Class 6 Theatre; Titus Andronicus (Improbable Fiction, NYC), Italian American Reconciliation (33 Productions NYC), Richmond Shephard One-Act Festival (NYC). Selected acting credits: Dora in The Swan (Chester Theatre Company), Molly in Dusk Rings a Bell (Shaker Bridge Theatre), Desdemona in Othello (NorthEast Shakespeare Ensemble), Julius Caesar in Julius Caesar (Tennessee Shakespeare Co.), Tekla in The Creditors (Miscreant Theatre Co, NYC), Hanna Jelkes in The Night of the Iguana (Penobscot Theatre), Sophia Hawthorne in The Kracken (Push Productions, NYC), Viola in Twelfth Night (Improbable Fiction, NYC). She has a BFA in Music Theatre Performance from Western Michigan University and an MFA in Acting from Alabama Shakespeare Festival/University of Alabama.
Kristina Rogers (Business Manager) currently works as a financial analyst for a major multinational technology company. Kristina has performed with numerous theatres around the valley, including Class 6 (Matt & Ben, Goodnight Desdemona, Good Morning Juliet), iTheatre Collaborative (Gruesome Playground Injuries, Indivisible), Desert Rose (As You Like It, Rozencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead), Desert Stages (Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, The Turn of the Screw, A Man of No Importance), Mesa Encore Theatre (Noises Off), and Theater Works (Speed-The-Plow). Kristina holds a BA in Theatre, an MBA from Arizona State University, and has also studied at the Guanghua School of Management, Toulousse Business School, and Vienna University of Economics and Business.
Members of the Board
- President: Lindsey Gardner-Penner
- Vice-President: Natalie Andrews
- Secretary: Jaime Fox
- Literary Manager: Laurelann Porter
- Web Administration: Natalie Andrews, Elizabeth Brownlee-Blair, David Dickinson, Jaime Fox