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What we're doing here.

Subtext Studio Theatre Company Mission Statement

  Subtext Studio Theatre Company produces new plays by emerging playwrights, plays that center the voices of traditionally and potentially marginalized communities and peoples. The goal is to express the voices and experiences of all people in order to better understand ourselves, our culture and our community.

Subtext Studio Theater Company endeavors to provide a safe space for the creation of new theatrical works, following a production model that honors and promotes equity, diversity and inclusion on all levels.


Organization History

Founded in November 2020 as a virtual outlet during the pandemic, Dragonfly Theatre produced new plays on zoom. Dragonfly Theatre went into hiatus in May of 2022 as theaters resumed live programming. In December of 2022, Dragonfly Theatre Company merged with Subtext Studio Theatre and 16th Street Theater, and

changed its name to Subtext Studio Theatre Company.

The original Subtext Studio was founded by Artistic Director Omar Vicente Fernandez with other UIC students in 2021 to provide opportunities to emerging BIPOC artists so that they may gain valuable professional experience by producing theater. Fernandez, a Mexican American artist, had been active in professional theater since his teens, working with 16th Street Theater (Berwyn, IL) in various capacities for nearly a decade, most recently as a staff member in 2022.

After 16th Street Theater closed in December of 2022, Omar joined forces with Jean Gottlieb (Interim Artistic Director of 16th Street Theater and Artistic Director/Founder of Dragonfly Theatre Company), bringing Jean into SSTC as Managing Director and combining the missions and resources of 16th Street Theater, Dragonfly Theatre and Subtext Studio Theatre Companies. 



Subtext Studio Theatre Company has two goals: to produce new works that center the voices of traditionally and potentially marginalized communities and peoples; and to bring together a diverse array of both emerging and seasoned artists and organizations to support the continued growth of live theater and theater artists.

We believe the way forward for live theater is to combine knowledge and resources to develop an equitable theatrical community that can rely on each other for support, not only as organizations, but as individual artists. By endeavoring to bring together diverse, experienced artists with emerging actors and designers for our productions, opportunities will be created for mutual personal and professional growth and understanding.  



SSTC focuses on three areas of programming: Staged Readings of new plays, Productions of new plays, and the Mentoring of emerging artists with Master Classes and Production opportunities.

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