The Carpetbag Theatre, Inc. (CBT), founded in 1969 and chartered in 1970, is a professional, multigenerational ensemble company dedicated to the production of new works. Our mission is to give artistic voice to the issues and dreams of people who have been silenced by racism, classism, sexism, ageism, homophobia and other forms of oppression. CBT serves communities by returning their stories to them with honesty, dignity, and concern for the aesthetic of that particular community, helping culturally specific communities to re-define how they organize.
The company works in partnership with other community artists, activists, cultural workers, storytellers, leaders and people who are simply concerned, creating original works through collaboration in a style based in storytelling and song.
The artistic vision of the company is rooted in the practice of hearing, interpreting and re-imagining the stories of our collective communities. The artistic process begins with hearing meaning and imagining an empowered listener, whether it be an individual or particular community. Our cultural aesthetic is concerned with alignment. Each cultural community must define its own aesthetic based upon its own values and experiences, its own vision of beauty and how it defines itself.
We look for alignment with these values and communities, appreciating that we seek to instigate change within the aesthetic and social context of the community where change is needed to improve the human condition. For a successful artistic experience, the artist and the audience become a part of the same community, even for a brief time, and examine the story being told.