General Info

Company Biography

The Debate Society is an Obie Award winning, Brooklyn based company that creates new plays through the collaboration of Hannah Bos (writer/performer), Paul Thureen (writer/performer) and Oliver Butler (director/developer).

The Debate Society’s plays include JACUZZI (Ars Nova; publication forthcoming from Samuel French), BLOOD PLAY (Bushwick Starr/Under The Radar/Williamstown Theater Festival; Samuel French), BUDDY COP 2 (Ontological-Hysteric Incubator; Samuel French), YOU’RE WELCOME (The Brick; published by Playscripts), CAPE DISAPPOINTMENT (PS122; published by Samuel French and in PLAY A JOURNAL OF PLAYS), THE EATEN HEART, THE SNOW HEN and A THOUGHT ABOUT RAYA.

The Debate Society trio are recipients of a 2012 Obie Grant, 2013 Obie Award (Paul Thureen; Performance - Blood Play), NEFA National Theater Project Grant, Sundance Institute Fellows, winners of a 2010 “Village Voice Best of Award” for “Best Argument for Devised Theater” and were the 2012-14 Ars Nova Company in Residence. They are proud faculty members of The National Theater Institute.

The Debate Society Board

Hannah Bos

Oliver Butler

Isaac Butler

Jenny Gersten

Andrew Horwitz

Anne Love

Ian Savage

Leslie Strongwater

Evan Thayer

Paul Thureen

- Please note: all Savages and Butlers on the board are all unrelated.


The Debate Society provides a super involved, super unique, super rewarding internship program. We are always looking to talk to new intern candidates. If interested, visit our CONTACT page to drop us a line. Past Interns: Anna Elliott, Alexandra Young, Marisa Savic, Benjamin Palacios & Julia McGill.

Among the better experimental companies to emerge in the past five years, the Debate Society fills a unique, shadowy niche. While the others might employ gestural vocabularies, metacabaret or high-concept lampoon, the Debate Society is carving out a body of work notable for its queasy humor and moody, haunting tableaux.

David Cote, Time Out New York