WOW Festival: New York City; October 2-19, 1980-present

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New York City's WOW Café, Festival, and Theatre

Curated by Mimi McGurl. Copyright (c) by Mimi McGurl 2008. All rights reserved.

This exhibit focuses on lesbian theatre history with an emphasis on the story of New York’s WOW Café and Theatre. This exhibit will eventually provide a wealth of primary sources from the personal papers of the founders of the theatre. If you have any additional photographs, programs, or other materials about WOW, please email the OutHistory Coordinator at

Lois Weaver (r), Peggy Shaw (l). Photo: Copyright by Eva Weiss.

See: First Women's One World (WOW) Festival


First WOW Festival, 25 St. Marks Place, New York City, October 2-19, 1980.

Second WOW Festival, 140 2nd Avenue, New York City, October 1-11, 1981.

WOW Cafe and Theater opens, East 11th St at 1st Ave, New York City, 1982.

WOW Cafe Theater moves to East 4th Street at Bowery, New York City 198?.

WOW continues to be active in the present.


Angelos, Maureen, Babs Davy, Dominique Dibbell, Peggy Healy, Lisa Kron. The Five Lesbian Brothers: Four Plays. New York; Theatre Communications Group, 2000.

Case, Sue-Ellen, ed. Split Britches: Lesbian Practice/Feminist Performance. London and NY: Routledge, 1996.

Hart, Lynda and Peggy Phelan, ed. Acting Out: Feminist Performances. Ann Arbor: U. of Michigan, 1993.

Hughes, Holly. Clit Notes: A Sapphic Sampler. New York: Grove Press, 1996.

Martin, Carol, ed. A Sourcebook for Feminist Practices. Routledge: London and New York, 1996.

Meyer, Moe, ed. The Politics and Poetics of Camp. Routledge: London and New York, 1994.

Muñoz, José Esteban. Dissidentifications: Queers of Color and the Performance of Politics. Minneapolis and London: U. of Minnesota, 1999.

Troyano, Alina. I, Carmelita Tropicana: Performing Between Cultures. Boston: Beacon, 2000.

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