About The 40+ Stage Company
The 40+ Stage Company was founded in March 2016 by Gene Johnson, a well-known actor, and director, and John J. Hohn, a retired businessman; both of Winston-Salem. The company is a 503 (c) 9, non-profit corporation. The mission of the company has evolved since its founding. Building on the belief in the transformative power of the theater experience, the company is most at home in selecting plays that explore intergenerational themes. We want to engage and challenge audiences with productions that depict characters navigating and prevailing in real-life situations. We are an actor’s company. Casting is open to actors of all ages. Our vision is embodied in productions including Drive Miss Daisy, 2018; Staircase, 2018; God of Carnage, 2019; Love Letters, 2019; Levittown, 2020; The Last Romance, 2021; Better Days, 2021, and others planned for future seasons.
The Company is proud to be designated a resident theater company of the Milton Rhodes Center for the Arts, Winston-Salem, NC by the Arts Council of Winston-Salem and Forsyth County. The Mountcastle Black Box Theater is our home venue.
The Company also promotes and conducts classroom and stage performance opportunities for older adults in acting, dramatic reading, and improvisation. Our commitment to our outreach program is based on gerontology research which establishes that participation in the performing arts has a demonstrably positive impact on the mental and physical health of those in the latter decades of life including overcoming isolation and depression, maintaining mental acuity, and memory, enhancing communication skills and listening, and better physical health. Organizations providing services to the aging population are encouraged to contact us for more information about our outreach programs.
The logo is the product of reflection and planning by the board during the darkened stage year of the Covid-19 pandemic. The extension of the horizontal bar of the “4” into the “0” is a minus sign—our way of declaring our plays are open to actors of all ages. Our casts have included actors under age 40 all along. Somehow, however, word got out that we were only interested in older actors. The current logo sets the message straight. Our mission statement reaffirms our intention to produce shows with intergenerational themes that challenge prevailing social norms and attitudes. We want to project a contemporary image and provide performances opportunities for actors of all ages.