News Release: DCMetroTheaterArts Is Here to Stay!


 DCMetroTheaterArts Squelches Rumors of Closing, Announces Plan for Future Leadership and Growth

Staff Rallies in Response to Founding Editor’s Diagnosis,
Thanks Local Theater Community for Its Continuing Support, and Vows to Keep Covering More Local Performing Arts Than Any Other Media Outlet

Metro DC (April 11, 2017)—Joel Markowitz, publisher and founding editor of DCMetroTheaterArts (DCMTA), was recently diagnosed with ALS. This sad news hit DCMTA’s writers and editors especially hard. But in a strong showing of their commitment to Joel and the hugely successful platform he built—a website now covering more local performing arts than any other media outlet—a core team has organized within DCMTA to carry forward Joel’s vision.

“DCMetroTheaterArts is here to stay,” Joel posted to Facebook. “It’s not closing. We have an important job to do and we will continue to do it.”

Joel continues to personally direct the day-to-day operations of DCMTA and oversee the work of its writing and editorial staff. Meanwhile he has designated Senior Reviewer and Columnist David Siegel to be the point person during transition to the new team leadership that will ensure the future of the site. For now David will be, in Joel’s words, “the voice of DCMetroTheaterArts with me.”

“There are very few folks in local theater whom Joel has not helped, supported, and encouraged in some way,” said David. “Joel has been a champion of countless theater artists for generations, and now at this challenging time we all are deeply grateful for the outpouring of support that has been shown by the theater community, both for DCMTA and Joel personally.”

“We had an incredible meeting with the senior writers of DCMetroTheaterArts,” Joel posted to Facebook. “We are a family and this family sticks together and helps each other, and we are not going anywhere—but we will be better than ever.”

With a staff of more than 80 writers recruited by Joel in Metro DC, Baltimore, and Philadelphia, DCMTA covers not only touring Broadway shows and locally produced professional theater but also community theater, children’s theater, high school and university theater, theater festivals, play readings, dance and music, and much more.

A hallmark of DCMTA is not only the expansiveness of its coverage but also its inclusivity and commitment to opportunity. DCMTA intends to be every theatergoer’s resource, every theater artist’s ally, and every theater’s amplifier—a local publication of record where up-and-coming talent can be celebrated right alongside big stars.

DCMTA’s mission is undimmed. As Joel says, “It’s business as usual.”

Philadelphia, New Jersey, and Delaware coverage will continue under the leadership of Tim Dunleavy and Deb Miller. New York coverage will also continue with Richard Seff at the helm.

For all advertising, marketing, publicity, and other inquiries, continue to email Joel at [email protected] or call him at (703) 447-8805. David Siegel can be reached at [email protected] or (703) 599-9130.


“More Local Performing Arts Coverage
Than You’ll Find Anywhere Else”

Bruce Markowitz, Founder
Joel Markowitz, Publisher and Editor
Nicole Hertvik, Assistant Editor
Robert Michael Oliver, Assistant Editor
Alex Murphy, Web Editor
Brett Widmann, Web Editor

Interim media contact: John Stoltenberg
[email protected], (202) 365-6181

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John Stoltenberg
John Stoltenberg is executive editor of DC Theater Arts. He writes both reviews and his Magic Time! column, which he named after that magical moment between life and art just before a show begins. In it, he explores how art makes sense of life—and vice versa—as he reflects on meanings that matter in the theater he sees. Decades ago, in college, John began writing, producing, directing, and acting in plays. He continued through grad school—earning an M.F.A. in theater arts from Columbia University School of the Arts—then lucked into a job as writer-in-residence and administrative director with the influential experimental theater company The Open Theatre, whose legendary artistic director was Joseph Chaikin. Meanwhile, his own plays were produced off-off-Broadway, and he won a New York State Arts Council grant to write plays. Then John’s life changed course: He turned to writing nonfiction essays, articles, and books and had a distinguished career as a magazine editor. But he kept going to the theater, the art form that for him has always been the most transcendent and transporting and best illuminates the acts and ethics that connect us. He tweets at @JohnStoltenberg. Member, American Theatre Critics Association.


  1. Am wishing Joel tons of luck and glad to see the GoFundMe campaign is helping so much. Also — the best to both David and John — both of whom know DC-area and other theater so well and have such professional talent and skill. Keep up the good work and I’ll be supporting you all.


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