The primary Stages Off-Broadway Oral history Project

Celebrating the visionaries who created New York's vibrant Off- and Off-Off-Broadway theater.

Joan MacIntosh

Joan MacIntosh

Co-Founder of The Performance Group, Actress, Director
Born on Sunday, November 25, 1945

Interviewed on: Thursday, April 24, 2014
Location: Primary Stages Offices
Interviewed by: Mary Bacon
Interview #38
"I want theatre to be as necessary as television and iPhones."
Joan MacIntosh Highlights
Video Length: 5 minutes, 29 seconds
Joan MacIntosh Interview
Video Length: 2 hours, 14 minutes

Joan MacIntosh is an actress, director, and co-founder, with Richard Schechner, of The Performance Group, one of the foremost experimental theaters of the 1960’s and 70’s. With the Group, she performed and taught workshops in New York at The Performing Garage and on tour throughout the US, Western Europe, and India. MacIntosh played in DIONYSUS IN ’69 (1968, OBIE), MAKBETH (1970), COMMUNE(1971, OBIE), THE TOOTH OF CRIME (1972, OBIE), THE BEARD, CONCERT FOR TPG, MOTHER COURAGE AND HER CHILDREN (1975), THE MARILYN PROJECT (1975), SAKONNET POINT (1975), and OEDIPUS (1977). She then had an extensive career on and Off-Broadway. With The Public Theater, she performed in ALICE IN CONCERT (1978), DISPATCHES (1978), THREE ACTS OF RECOGNITION (1982), JULIUS CAESAR (1988), CYMBELINE (1989), A BRIGHT ROOM CALLED DAY (1990), ALL’S WELL THAT ENDS WELL (1993), MACBETH (2006), 365 DAYS/365 PLAYS (2007), FATHER COMES HOME FROM THE WARS, PTS. 1, 8, & 9 (2009), THE BACCHAE (2009), and JUMP (2010). With NYTW, she worked with Ivo van Hove and performed in his MORE STATELY MANSIONS (1997, 1998, OBIE, Drama League Award, Herald Angel Award), ALICE IN BED (2000), and THE MISANTHROPE (2007), and assisted him in directing his production of A STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE (1999). Other Off-Broadway favorites include: JoAnne Akalaitis’ production of REQUEST CONCERT (1981, Drama Desk Award), Joe Chaikin’s production of NIGHT SKY, A SHAYNA MAIDEL (1987), ABE LINCOLN IN ILLINOIS (1993), Robert Woodruff’s CHAIR (2008, TFANA), and the Primary Stages production of HAPPY NOW? (2010). In 1998, MacIntosh received an OBIE Award for Sustained Excellence of Performance. On Broadway, she performed in Curse of an Aching Heart (1982), Our Town (1988), Orpheus Descending (1989), and The Seagull (1993). There are also many favorites from her performances in regional theatre: Sore Throats (1983), Hedda Gabler (1984), The Three Sisters (1984), The Balcony (1986), Elizabeth: Almost by Chance a Woman (1987), two different roles in two productions of King Lear (1988, 2002), By the Bog of Cats (2001), two different roles in two productions of The Seagull (2002, 2011-14), Britannicus (2007, A.R.T.), and In a Year with 13 Moons (2013).

Mentioned in Interview

The Performance Group, The Performing Garage, The Wooster Group, NYSF/The Public, Women’s Project Theater, New York Theatre Workshop, Primary Stages, Theatre for a New Audience