Located at 134 West 18th Street, the building will act as the Theatre’s new headquarters

Hero Shot 134 18th v2 touch up

NEW YORK, March 2, 2023 – Today, the Lucille Lortel Theatre (The Theatre) and Denham Wolf Real Estate Services (Denham Wolf) announced the purchase of a three-story carriage house in Chelsea which will help support emerging artists, the creation of new theatrical works, and bolster New York’s iconic downtown theatre scene. Located at 134 West 18th Street, the building will act as the Theatre’s new headquarters, featuring a fully accessible 61-seat studio theater, a public, collaborative co-working space for artists, and new office space for the growing theatre company. The fully renovated space is anticipated to be open in 2025.

The purchase will expand the Theatre’s real estate portfolio, having a positive impact on their financial capacity and security, in addition to helping promote their growing programmatic initiatives in the New York City Off-Broadway theatre community.

With the finalization of this purchase, Lucille Lortel Theatre is also proud to announce the appointment of Michael Heitzman and Caridad Svich as Co-Artistic Directors of new work, joining Kimille Howard, Artistic Director of Educational Programs. Heitzman and Svich will be creating new programming and initiatives as the Theatre expands its physical and artistic footprint.

Michael Heitzman (Artistic Director of New Musical Development) is a longtime Lucille Lortel Theatre collaborator, and acclaimed writer and director. His re-imagined production of 42nd Street was at The Ordway and Drury Lane/Chicago (Jeff Award nominee, Best Director). Recent directing credits: Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat starring David Archuleta (TCA), Beauty and the Beast (TCA, Ordway, PCLO, NSMT, La Mirada), Newsies, Big River, and Legally Blonde (Broadway Sacramento), SHREK and Disney's The Little Mermaid (NSMT, IRNE Award nominee, Best Director), VICES (Jeff Award nominee, Best Director) As a writer, Michael received a Grammy nomination for co-writing “Throw That Girl Around” from the Broadway musical Swing! For TV, he co-wrote the comedy pilot “Scott Free,” developed by Barwood Films and Grammnet, purchased by Paramount Pictures. He is a proud member of The Dramatists Guild, BMI, WGAe, and SDC.

Caridad Svich (Artistic Director of New Play Development) is a playwright, translator, screenwriter, and lyricist whose recognitions include a 2012 OBIE for Lifetime Achievement and a 2018 Ellen Stewart Career Achievement Award from ATHE. Svich’s signature plays include 12 Ophelias, Iphigenia Crash Land Falls on the Neon Shell That Was Once Her Heart, Red Bike, Guapa (NNPN Rolling World Premiere), Spark (National Latino Playwriting Award), and The House of the Spirits (ATCA Primus Prize). Currently running at Repertorio Espanol in NYC are her plays, Eva Luna (world premiere: 2022) and In the Time of the Butterflies. Among her projects in development is a new musical about Pablo Picasso with director Gordon Greenberg, composer Stephen Schwartz, and actor Antonio Banderas for Trafalgar Entertainment.

More details regarding upcoming programming will be announced soon.

“We are excited to be able to continue Lucille Lortel’s legacy of supporting New York City artists and theater lovers by expanding our physical presence and programming. With the purchase of this space, theater artists will have a space to dream and create new works, while our growing theatre company and artistic team will spearhead new programs and shepherd new works. This new space expands on Lucille Lortel Theatre’s mission to foster both new and established artists, increase awareness and appreciation of Off-Broadway, and create a larger, more diverse community of theatre makers and audiences,” said George Forbes, Executive Director of Lucille Lortel Theatre.

“As Artistic Director for New Musical Development I am honored to have this opportunity to expand my over ten-year relationship with this legendary organization. I’m proud to continue Lucille Lortel’s legacy of championing artists by providing a vibrant and exciting home for developing new musical theater,” said Michael Heitzman, newly announced Artistic Director for Musical Development of Lucille Lortel Theatre.

"It is with great pleasure that I am joining Lucille Lortel Theatre as Artistic Director of New Play Development. My passion and commitment to new writing for performance both as an artist and new play champion finds a home in this historic organization. I am looking forward to establishing an artist-centered, climate-conscious program that will nurture theatre-makers and their works for now and the future. During these perilous times, it gives me hope that the Lortel wants to support the kind of artistic dreaming necessary that will help guide us all through and toward the light," said Caridad Svich, newly announced Artistic Director of New Play Development.

For over two decades, Denham Wolf has been a trusted partner of the Theatre and has acted as their project manager and broker, creating stability and enhancing their ability to support new theatre through real estate.

With the desire to increase visibility and to usher in a new chapter through real estate, the Theatre turned to Denham Wolf to help define organizational objectives, conduct a detailed assessment of the market and real estate opportunities, and identify a new space. It was determined that purchasing a new site would best support the Theatre’s mission, and Denham Wolf’s Transactions Services team structured and negotiated an optimal deal for 134 West 18 Street.

Acquiring a property that sets the organization up for long-term financial security was the team’s top priority. With expertise in the arts, nonprofit, and theatre sectors, Denham Wolf has a long track record of balancing stakeholder interest and engaging in forward-thinking real estate planning in a variety of relevant industries.

“An arts organization’s real estate portfolio can be a powerful tool in increasing their influence on the local culture,” said Paul Wolf, Co-Founder and President Denham Wolf. “We’re proud to have guided the Lucille Lortel Theatre through their purchase of a new multi-functional space that will diversify their portfolio and solidify their position as a bulwark for Off-Broadway theatre. Thanks to Lucille Lortel’s legacy, Off-Broadway theatre has been forever impacted, and this purchase is a great example of how real estate can support the mission of a vitally important organization.”

About Lucille Lortel Theatre

The Lucille Lortel Theatre’s mission is to foster both new and established artists, increase awareness and appreciation of Off-Broadway, and uphold fair and equitable business and artistic practices in service of creating a larger, more diverse community of theatre makers and audiences. The Theatre recently produced Four Saints in Three Acts, performed by David Greenspan, and co-produced Kate Berlant’s sold-out one woman show Kate, both New York Times Critic’s Picks. Its programs include NYC Public High School Playwriting Fellowship, Fellowships in NYC Theatre at Bennington College, The Lucille Lortel Theatre Music Theatre Lab: Immigrant Experiences at The New School, Lucille Lortel Awards and Playwrights’ Sidewalk, Live at The Lortel (a video interview and podcast series), Internet Off-Broadway Database (IOBDB.com), Non-Profit Theatre Strategic and Management Services, and Subsidized Theatre Space. For more information, please visit www.lortel.org.

About Denham Wolf Real Estate Services

An essential resource for the nonprofit community, Denham Wolf Real Estate Services provides expertise in transactions, development, and project management. Through these integrated services, the firm empowers organizations to take a thoughtful, mission-first approach to real estate. Denham Wolf has partnered with hundreds of diverse nonprofit organizations since its founding in 1998, shaping millions of square feet across New York City and beyond. For more information, visit: www.denhamwolf.com.