The National Women's Theatre Festival

Image is a a large wooden door with both sides open, and the words: "Opening Doors. The National Women's Theatre Festival 2023, June 21-July 1 at NC State University Theatre. Doors and background are pink washed.

2023 marks the 8th annual National Women’s Theatre Festival. Each year our Festival celebrates gender parity and all things theatre: full of performances, workshops, community conversations, and other events. This year we’re bringing back ALL your favorite programs – WTFringe, WTFCon, WTFamily, and the WTFringe Lab for Directors + Producers.

We’re thrilled to be partnering once again with NC State University Theatre who will host Festival 2023 from June 21-July 1, as part of their annual TheatreFEST month of programming.

Our theme for 2023 is Opening Doors. What does it mean to open a door? Recently we find ourselves opening our doors out onto a world that seems to have exited pandemic stasis, whether we’re ready or not. Metaphorically, we open doors all the time – into a new gig, career, role or phase in our lives. Often, underrepresented-gender people find ourselves opening these metaphorical doors into places where we haven’t been or been expected before. How do we make sure to leave them open behind us so someone else like us can get through, too? To open a door for someone else can be an act of kindness, or a paternalistic act denoting you don’t believe them capable of opening it for themselves. In all its panoply of meanings, our theme this year considers and acknowledges liminality, transition, change, and that feeling of being poised on the brink of something but not quite having stepped into it yet – and all the excitement, anticipation, trepidation, and hope this can bring.

What is WTFCon23?​​

WTFCon23 is WTF’s annual educational conference, part of the 2023 Festival. WTFCon23 is a place for our community to connect and learn from and with each other; to advocate for our needs and the needs we see around us; to deeply, intentionally, and thoughtfully explore our work; and to surround ourselves with others who champion gender parity and equity in our field. More than a conference, our goal is for WTFCon23 to be a revitalizing self-enrichment experience for theatre artists and academics: an experience that involves humanity, belonging, and a shared sense of purpose, with opportunities to instigate and incubate.


Flyer of the National Women's Theatre Festival 2023 with dates for each program. WTFringe23 is June 22-25 and June 28-July 1. WTFCon23 is June 21-23. WTFamily23 is June 21-July1.
Headline that reads "WTFringe23" in black, pink, and teal letters.

What is WTFringe23?

WTFringe23 is a performance festival spanning two weekends of the 8th Annual National Women’s Theatre Festival. Our curated fringe festival offers a platform for new & developing works that are experimental, innovative, and collaborative. In other words, productions that push boundaries and embrace parity! WTFringe23 prioritizes accessibility by featuring in-person, virtual, and hybrid performances, each running between 20-90 minutes (with no intermission).


When you attend WTFringe23, you’ll see productions that: 

  • Center Women, Non-binary, Gender-diverse, Trans, + Gender Non-conforming artists
  • Feature Black, Indigenous, People of Color, and Global Majority artists
  • Feature Disabled, Blind, Deaf and/or Neurodivergent artists
  • Embrace innovation + experimentation
  • Prioritize Accessibility 
  • Create conversations that further Equity + Social Justice
Image of a split Zoom screen performance with three Chinese American actors against a yellow background.