Central Square Theater (CST), is dedicated to the exploration of social justice, science and sexual politics through theater; catalyzing the dynamic synergies sparked by the collaboration between The Nora and Underground Railway. Through award-winning productions, the Catalyst Collaborative@ MIT Science Theater Initiative, and youth development programming – CST creates theater where points of view are heard, perspective shifts, and change can happen.

Created collaboratively 15 years ago by Underground Railway and The Nora Theaters, Central Square Theater is the oldest female led theater organization in the Greater Boston area under the leadership of Executive Director Catherine Carr Kelly, Artistic Director Debra Wise, and Artistic Director Lee Mikeska Gardner.  With a combined history of 50 years of work, CST engages over 35,000 people annually through live performance, rigorous youth education, and community programs. CST works closely with MIT on Catalyst Collaborative@MIT, one of the only nationwide partnerships between a world class research institute and a theater.

Learn more about the history of Central Square Theater.

About The Nora 

The Nora mission promotes the feminine perspective through mainstage productions, support and mentoring for female artists and the exploration of gender and feminism.

 Lee Mikeska Gardner, Artistic Director

Learn more about the history of The Nora Theatre Company.

About Underground Railway Theater

Underground Railway Theater creates live performance that responds poetically to vital social, political, and scientific questions of our time, in the activist and collaborative spirit of our namesake. Through interdisciplinary inquiry and dynamic partnership, we create theater of great beauty and social content–work that challenges and delights, informs and celebrates.

Debra Wise,  Artistic Director

Learn more about the history of Underground Railway Theater.


Central Square Theater  is dedicated to the theatrical exploration of social justice, science and sexual politics by providing:

Award-winning annual main stage theater productions (5-7) centering social justice, science, and sexual politics and elevating these themes for exploration with audiences.

Community Connectivity uses consensus organizing to create partnerships with thought leaders, activists, scientists, artists and partner organizations to plan community dialogue around the social justice themes of each production.

Catalyst Collaborative@MIT programs are dedicated to exploring the intersection of science and art at a time when the understanding of science is critical to the nation’s health and well-being. Each Season CST produces one to two  science-centric productions, and creates new work in the field.

The Nora’s That’s What She Said Series: TWSS is a series that activates gender parity in theater by providing female artists opportunities to create, develop and showcase their work, deepening their connections to local audiences, and strengthening the field.  In a typical Season, TWSS features up to  15 events elevating female artists and projects in stage readings and workshop performances.

The Education and Youth Development Program on-going Programs include the Page to Stage-In School Residencies; Summer Stage-tuition driven summer programming for ages 6-13; the Leadership and Professional Development program for aspiring arts & culture professionals; and Youth Underground.