My life is what it is now because in the summer of 2011 I walked into a building I didn't know and auditioned to become a Bat. The Flea was my introduction to what would become my artistic family and collaborators. The relationships I've forged and fostered at The Flea have brought me to almost every theater company and group I could imagine working with.
-Cleo Gray, Bat Alum
The Bats also produce SERIALS, a raucous late-night play competition featuring New York’s hottest actors, writers and directors. The concept is simple: five plays enter, three plays leave, and the audience votes on their three favorites, which then return the next week with a new installation. Each year SERIALS showcases over 35 playwrights, 35 directors and 70 actors in 200+ roles. Writers can submit material for consideration; all acting and directing roles are filled by The Bats.
My time at the Flea was a valuable one. I can't stress that enough. The company of actors were top notch and made me a better actor. And the community of artists that I've met and connected with has led me to numerous projects including my first off Broadway show. I am forever grateful for the 2 years I spent with this theater company. There aren't enough words to express my wonderful experience as a Bat at the Flea.
-Ugo Chukwu, Bat Alum
The Bats are meant to be a stepping stone for young artists seeking to make a career in the arts. Most stay with the company for two to three years and the relationships they form are for life – many continue to work together after they leave, and many come back to work at The Flea as paid artists. Participants are selected through open call auditions. There is no fee to audition or be part of The Bats.
To this day being a Bat remains one of the best experiences I have had as an actor. When asked for advice by young actors in NY, I always point them to The Flea - there is no better theater in NY for a young thespian who wants to cut their teeth and develop their chops.
-Michael Gladis, Bat Alum
“Best Off-Off-Broadway Theater to Act With” –Backstage
“the fuel in the theater’s engine.” –The New York Times
“The performances by the Bats, the Flea’s young resident company, are all well thought out and fresh. The Bats are most definitely a talented group of young artists.” –NYtheatre.com
“The Flea’s Bats are perennially outstanding.” – Flavorpill
“The Flea such a special place for me. I always have fun with The Bats, and I can tell it’s because they’re having fun, not just pretending to. “
– Huffington Post