The mission of Girl Talk Theatre is to use the art of theatre as a tool for empowering homeless, poor and marginalized women. We offer a safe and nurturing environment for the telling of their stories by teaching theatre classes out of which we create performance opportunities for these women. We seek to honor their experiences, giving them tangible evidence that they are important for what they were, what they are now, and what they can be in the future.
We also hope that our audiences will begin to see that there is no stereotype of a marginalized woman, that they are each strong, unique individuals. This project speaks to the basic human need of these women, to be heard and known as individuals, the basic human need we all have to tell our story and to be heard.
Artistic Director – Founder
Stephanie Cotton-Snell was able to realize her dream of starting Girl Talk Theatre in 2008 when she was awarded the Kip Tiernan Fellowship of Education and Social Justice. This Fellowship is given to one women per year for the purpose of starting a program that will enhance the lives of marginilized women. She was able to bring to this project her decades of experience as a theatre director, teacher and performer to create this company that allows her to use her passion for using the power of theatre to tell important stories with those who would not typically find themselves on stage.
Stephanie has worked as a theatre teacher and director at Park Street School and Boston Trinity Academy and held an adjunct faculty position at Eastern Nazarene College. She has also facilitated theatre workshops at Park Street Church, Berklee Conservatory and Tufts and was a workshop leader and performer for 10 years traveling in the U. S. and Europe with Friends of the Groom Theatre Company. Stephanie also co-founded the Performance Gallery, a theatre company designed to support and create alternative theatre. At the Performance Gallery she functioned as an actress, writer and Development Director.
Stephanie has performed with numerous theaters around the country including Central Square Theatre, Stage First Cincinnati, NKU Summer Theatre, the Bard Alley Theater, Cincinnati Public Theater, the Orlando Theatre Project, and Ensemble Studio Theatre in New York. She also misspent her youth performing in Orlando’s theme parks. She is a member of SAG-AFTRA and has appeared in numerous regional commercials, industrial videos and independent films in the Cincinnati area and in Boston.
Stephanie holds an M.F.A. in Theatre Performance from University of Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music, and a B.F.A. in Theatre Performance from Auburn University. She has also trained in techniques of Theatre of the Oppressed with Augosto Boal at TOPLab in New York as well as extended workshops with Diane Venora and Carolyn Pickman.
Kippy Goldfarb/Carolle Photography
Mary C. (Mimi) Huntington
Mary C. (Mimi) Huntington began her involvement with Girl Talk Theatre in 2008 while still the artistic director of The Nora Theatre Company, a professional theater company in Cambridge. She had recently read an article in the Boston Globe about then newly formed Girl Talk, with its mission to empower marginalized women through the art of theater. Because The Nora’s mission included promoting work that championed the feminine voice, she believed a collaboration with Girl Talk would be an exciting way to further the expressions of women’s experiences. For the next several years, the women of Girl Talk Theatre presented their shows at The Nora, participated in talkbacks with audiences and actors from Nora productions, and attended Nora shows.
Mimi began her theater career as an actress, playing in Off-off Broadway, regional, and summerstock productions, and singing in nightclubs in New York City. She apprenticed in theater at the Williamstown Theatre Festival and The Barn Theatre in Augusta, MI, and became a member of Actors’ Equity Association (AEA), the union of professional actors and stage managers in the United States, in 1977. After earning an MFA from Brandeis University, she founded The Nora Theatre Company and held the position of artistic director for 27 years. During her tenure, The Nora staged 74 productions including 38 Greater Boston, New England, or World premieres, and earned seven Elliot Norton Awards, five IRNE (Independent Reviewers of New England) Awards, and inclusion in many year-end “Best-of” lists. Mimi is one of the leaders in the development of Central Square Theater, a state of the art theater facility, and home of The Nora and Underground Railway Theater. She has served on the boards of StageSource, a service organization for the Boston-area theater community, and the Central Square Business Association; and is the past president of NEAT, the Producers Association of New England Area Theatres, and the Theatre Community Benevolent Fund, on whose board she continues to serve. In June 2013, she received the StageSource Theatre Hero award for her service to the Greater Boston theater community.
Mimi continues her work in Girl Talk through assisting Stephanie Cotton-Snell in the weekly Girl Talk theater classes, developing scripts with the women of Girl Talk, and co-directing the productions which are presented in venues throughout the Greater Boston area.