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Class of 1991: Manbites Dog Theater 

Jeff Storer and Ed Hunt in 1997, the year they bought a permanent home for Manbites Dog Theater at 703 Foster St. in Durham

Photo by Alan Dehmer

Jeff Storer and Ed Hunt in 1997, the year they bought a permanent home for Manbites Dog Theater at 703 Foster St. in Durham

Over the years, we have received many nominations of Manbites Dog Theater for an Indies Arts Award. And no wonder: The theater that matters most seems to be found at the space located at 703 Foster St.

As it happens, Manbites Dog received the award in 1991. There's no rule against repeat winners, but this year turns out to be a good one to revisit the accomplishments of Jeff Storer and Ed Hunt, who unveiled their company in 1987 with a production of Jeffery M. Jones' Seventy Scenes of Halloween, which was produced in a vacant shoe store in Durham.

This December, Manbites Dog will formally celebrate 25 years in business, even as Hunt and Storer, in their idiosyncratic fashion, conduct the theater's 26th season. That same month, the theater will re-mount Seventy Scenes of Halloween, but with a new cast and directing team. Meanwhile, Storer and Hunt are collaborating with longtime staff photographer Alan Dehmer to produce a hardbound book of photos documenting 25 years of Manbites Dog Theater.

Below are a couple of early Indy notices of Manbites Dog's work, including a production that brought out conservative picketers, as well as a selection of photos that they are preparing for publication as they make plans to celebrate 25 years of bringing cutting-edge theater to Durham.

This 1994 Independent Weekly cover concerned a series of LGBT-themed plays produced by Manbites Dog Theater, titled "Don't Ask Don't Tell: A Festival of Queer Theater and Performance." Tim Miller's show was called "My Queer Body"; it was performed at the PSI Theatre, Durham Arts Council building, May 26-28, 1994.
  • This 1994 Independent Weekly cover concerned a series of LGBT-themed plays produced by Manbites Dog Theater, titled "Don't Ask Don't Tell: A Festival of Queer Theater and Performance." Tim Miller's show was called "My Queer Body"; it was performed at the PSI Theatre, Durham Arts Council building, May 26-28, 1994.

The article announcing Manbites Dog Theater as a 1991 Independent Weekly Indies Arts Award honoree (download larger JPG or PDF)
  • The article announcing Manbites Dog Theater as a 1991 Independent Weekly Indies Arts Award honoree (download larger JPG or PDF)

Lormarev C. Jones in the 2010 Manbites Dog Theater production of "Oh the Humanity and Other Exclamations" - PHOTO BY ALAN DEHMER
  • Photo by Alan Dehmer
  • Lormarev C. Jones in the 2010 Manbites Dog Theater production of "Oh the Humanity and Other Exclamations"

Alesandra Colaianni and Jay O'Berski in the 2010 Manbites Dog Theater production of "Blackbird" - PHOTO BY ALAN DEHMER
  • Photo by Alan Dehmer
  • Alesandra Colaianni and Jay O'Berski in the 2010 Manbites Dog Theater production of "Blackbird"

Ed Hunt and Jeff Storer in 1997 - PHOTO BY ALAN DEHMER

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