In January of 1989, actor and director Barry Heins invited fifteen friends – all experienced stage actors homesick for the New York theatrical community – to a weekly play reading group held in a vacant apartment in Sherman Oaks. Before long, a pool of forty actors was involved in readings that consisted of everything from classic plays to new plays and screenplays. The quality of the work attracted other theatre professionals eager to collaborate. Directors came to hear plays, as well as playwrights and screenwriters who arranged to watch these talented actors breathe life into their new scripts. Ten months later, the group became the exclusive tenants of Theatre Exchange in North Hollywood, and Interact was born. On May 1, 1992, the company formally incorporated as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit theater.
Since its founding, Interact has worked on various stages and venues in the San Fernando Valley, the Westside, and Downtown L.A., presenting more than forty full-scale productions of plays and musicals and receiving 95 performance and production awards (168 nominations), including Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle, Ovation, Stage Raw, Garland, LA Weekly, and NAACP Awards.
Interact also presents high-quality, low-cost, or free community programming, such as its annual North Hollywood summer arts education program for underserved youth, InterPLAY.
Before the pandemic, ITC produced "The Pulitzer Prize Winners: 10 Plays from 10 Decades," celebrating the centennial of the Pulitzer Prize for Drama at the North Hollywood Amelia Earhart Regional Library. In 2022, ITC produced "The Tony Award Winners," a series of six staged readings of outstanding plays which received the Tony Award for Best Play. The plays were presented on BroadwayOnDemand.com in partnership with Los Angeles Public Library's cultural enrichment program, "L.A. MADE," drawing viewers from across the globe.
Since 1999, ITC has presented staged readings of classic and contemporary plays every semester for UCLA School of Law and the Center for Liberal Arts and Free Institutions (CLAFI). The purpose of the readings is to evoke discussion of the ethical and societal issues raised in the plays, stimulate interdisciplinary consideration of the law and the humanities, and entertain.
The Telly Awards recognized ITC with two awards during the pandemic, a Bronze Award for "Just Another Birthday in Bedlam" and a Gold Award for "Faultless." Both shorts were written by playwright Catherine Butterfield and directed by Barry Heins and have garnered multiple film festival awards. They are accessible for viewing on the Interact Theatre Company Los Angeles YouTube Channel.
Address: 1333 Moorpark St. PMB 391
North Hollywood, CA 91602