From Director Marcella Kearns: GIRLS IN THE BOAT

3:00 PM
Director Marcella Kearns 

At the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colorado, this summer, my grandmother and I took a tour of the facilities where Team USA’s champion gymnasts, swimmers, and wrestlers train. Hopeful Olympic and Paralympic athletes by the thousands have passed through those doors. 

My grandmother pointed out the spot where my parents, before the Center was the Center (when it was still an Air Force base), celebrated their wedding reception. So many concepts collided for me in that moment: Excellence. Drive. Ambition. Hope. Family. Nation. Above all, the contradictions and tensions and glories inherent in the motto I saw everywhere (even on Team USA swag in the gift shop), one which should be familiar to all Americans: E Pluribus Unum.

Out of many, one. Our nation’s motto, adopted in 1782.


Alice Austen has written a play that is both a race through and a love letter to the history of US women’s rowing. Of greater weight to me in this story, however, are the sometimes thorny, sometimes bracing relationships and indomitable personalities of a crew striving at any cost to win the ultimate prize. Each radically individual, from every corner of the US, this crew battles family, school, government, one another, and themselves for the chance to do what they love most. For these women, unity is their best hope for victory. What E Pluribus Unum may cost them, and how it may reward them, is the greatest legacy of a noble sport.

Experience GIRLS IN THE BOAT, a world premiere play, Dec. 7 – Dec. 16!

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