As an actor, director, and/or producer, Ben Hodges has appeared in New York with The Barrow Group Theater Company, Origin Theater Company, Daedalus Theater Company, Monday Morning Productions, the Strawberry One-Act Festival, Coyote Girls Productions, Jet Productions, New York Actors’ Alliance, and Outcast Productions. Additionally, he has appeared in numerous productions presented by theatre companies that he founded, including the Tuesday Group and Visionary Works. On film, he can be seen in Macbeth: The Comedy.
Based on his development of the 2000 Showcase Code production of Wendy McCleod’s Things Being What They Are, a script that McCleod credits Ben with bringing to her attention after lying dormant for over ten years, the playwright revised the script and a full production opened to critical acclaim at Seattle Repertory Theatre in April 2003.
In 2001, Ben became director of development and then served as executive director for Fat Chance Productions Inc. and the Ground Floor Theatre, a New York-based nonprofit theatre and film production company. Prey for Rock and Roll was developed by Fat Chance from their stage production (the first legit theatrical production to play CBGBs) into a critically acclaimed feature film starring The Sopranos’ Emmy winner Drea de Matteo and Gina Gershon. Prey for Rock and Roll debuted at the 2003 Sundance Film Festival and won Best Feature at the 2003 Santa Cruz Film Festival. Additionally, Fat Chance produced the American premiere of award-winning Irish playwright Enda Walsh’s Misterman Off-Broadway, as well as conducted numerous readings, workshops, and productions in their Ground Floor Theatre, their mission statement being to present new works by new artists. Chief among projects housed in the Ground Floor Theatre was Closet Chronicles, starring Emmy winner Marilyn Sokol, which The New Yorker called “…a spry comedy.” In 2004, his directed Lawrence Dukore’s one-act When Men Were Men, the winner of the audience award at the 10th annual Turnip Theater Company’sFifteen Minute Play Festival.
In 2003 Ben organized NOOBA, the New Off-Off Broadway Association, an advocacy group dedicated to representing the concerns of expressly Off-Off-Broadway producers in the public forum and in negotiations with other local professional arts organizations. Ben and NOOBA have been influential in an effort to rehabilitate the Actors’ Equity Showcase Code, the production agreement that Ben considers the most detrimental obstacle to developmental theatre production in New York City since the first production opened in New York in the eighteenth century.
Ben served as an editorial assistant for six years on the 2001 Special Tony Honor Award–winning Theatre World, at sixty-two years of age, the most complete annual pictorial and statistical record of the American theatre, including Broadway, Off-Broadway, Off-Off-Broadway, and regional theatre productions. He became co-editor with John Willis in 1998. Jeffrey Lyons calls Theatre World “…a necessity,” and Alec Baldwin calls it “…indispensable.” Also an assistant for ten years to Mr. Willis for the prestigious Theatre World Awards for Outstanding Broadway and Off-Broadway Debuts, Ben was elected to the Theatre World Awards Board in 2002 and served as executive producer for the annual ceremony through 2006. In 2003 he was presented with a Special Theatre World Award in recognition of his ongoing stewardship of the event.
Ben also served as executive producer for the 2005 LAMBDA Literary Foundation “Lammy” Awards in New York, given for excellence in LGBT publishing. In support of the 2005 LAMBDA Literary Awards, Ben produced a reading of 2005 finalists at the LGBT Community Center in New York City.
Forbidden Acts, the first collected anthology of gay and lesbian plays from the span of the twentieth century, edited and with an introduction by Hodges, was published by Applause Theatre and Cinema Books in 2003 and
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