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Inventory of the Bay Area Labor Theatre Records, circa 1980-1982
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Administrative Information
  • Acquisition Information
  • History
  • Scope and Contents

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Bay Area Labor Theatre records
    Date (inclusive): circa 1980-1982
    Collection number: larc.ms.0246
    Accession number: >1996/063
    Extent: .75 cubic ft. (2 boxes)
    Repository: Labor Archives and Research Center
    J. Paul Leonard Library, Room 460
    San Francisco State University
    1630 Holloway Ave
    San Francisco, CA 94132-1722
    (415) 405-5571
    Languages: Languages represented in the collection: English.
    Location: Collection is available onsite.
    Abstract: Records include governance documents including some minutes, the articles of incorporation, by-laws, and balloting results.

    Administrative Information


    Collection is open for research.

    Related Collections

    Bay Area Labor Theatre Records, larc.ms.0228, contains additional materials. This collection is unprocessed.

    Publication Rights

    Copyright has not been assigned to the Labor Archives and Research Center. All requests for permission to publish or quote from materials must be submitted in writing to the Director of the Archives. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Labor Archives & Research Center as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by the reader.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Bay Area Labor Theatre Records, larc.ms.0246, Labor Archives and Research Center, San Francisco State University.

    Acquisition Information

    This material was donated by Richard O. Jarrett in the fall of 1996, accession number 1996/063.


    The Bay Area Labor Theatre was a multi-project political theater association of over 75 workers and artists from around the San Francisco Bay. BALT campaigned in support for local labor strikes, abortion rights, and against U. S. intervention in Central America. Internally work focused on skills development workshops. BALT projects included a picket line troupe, Front Line Action Collective (FLAC) which brought short, issue oriented sketches to picket lines, rallies and meetings through out the area; an improvisation workshop; a 25 voice Labor Chorus performing upbeat programs of songs, developing a musical revue to tour theaters and union halls; a KPFA radio project; and a publication, Critical Times. BALT also became involved in teaching, participating in a San Francisco Community College Labor Studies Department program (May 1981) entitled "Work, Workers and Workers Art."
    Bill Shields, a co-founder of BALT with Kevin Benge and Vesta Gray and a member of the Board of Directors, 1980-1982, co-produced with Rose Panico, KPFA's Swing N 'Shift, offering up a biweekly smorgasbord of satire, song, drama and documentary. The show premiered on May 28, 1981.
    Richard O. Jarrett was a past President and member of the BALT Board of Directors (1981-1982), and a member of the American Federation of Postal Workers. He was active in Bay Area cultural life as a performer, writer and teacher since the late 1940's.

    Scope and Contents

    Records include governance documents including some minutes, the articles of incorporation, by-laws, and balloting results.
    Records from activities recount stage and radio presentations including radio program by Bill Shields on KPFA underwritten by a $5000 NEA grant. Activities also include promotion, outreach, classes, production ideas and agit-prop theater, poetry and arts and letters.