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Joe Hanrahan’s theatre career stretches over several decades and several major growth spurts in the St. Louis theatre scene. After graduate school and an initial corporate job, Joe served as Marketing Director for the St. Louis Rep (then called the Loretto-Hilton Rep). He helped build their subscription base to over 16,000, and helped introduce the Studio as an additional performing space. During that time, he was part of Theatre Project Company, the first professional independent theatre company in town, performing in a number of shows.

Joe Hanrahan in Woody Allen's GOD

After TPC, he began directing (DEATH OF A SALESMAN for West End Players and THE BROWNSVILLE RAID, the first production from the new Black Rep). He performed in a number of lead roles in new plays (HURLEY BURLEY, BREAKING THE CODE, THE REAL THING) for City Players, a classic St. Louis company, in a variety of spaces. Then joined the director of those shows, Milt Zoth, forming the Orthwein Theatre Company at St. Louis Country Day Mary Institute School. There, Joe played Hamlet, Norman in THE NORMAN CONQUESTS and Truman in GIVE ‘EM HELL HARRY plus several other roles, while directing OUR TOWN, THE YEARS, DETECTIVE STORY AND BREAKFAST OF CHAMPIONS. Zoth also directed him in DRINKING IN AMERICA by Eric Bogosian at Zone 8 nightclub, the first of Joe's many one-man shows.

Joe then hooked up with the late Agnes Wilcox and her company, the New Theatre, acting and directing (SYLVIA, PSYCHOPATHIA SEXUALIS).

Dave Wassilak was part of the PSYCHOPATHIA cast, and post-show discussions led to their formation of The Midnight Company. Details of that 20-year run and still counting is spelled out on the Past Performances page of this website.

Joe Hanrahan as Chaplain Tappman
Joe continued work with other St. Louis groups, some now defunct, some still thriving - including Upstream, HotCity, R-S, acting, writing and directing for the site-specific group, OnSite, and, again, the Black Rep, where he did some acting, directed the acclaimed one-woman show NO CHILD, and served as Marketing Director for one year.

He got back into directing, sharpening his skills in community theatre with productions of BUS STOP, THE UNDERPANTS and A VIEW FROM THE BRIDGE (which won him Best Director honors for St. Louis community theatre). He then began a rich association with SATE (formerly Slightly Askew Theatre Ensemble), acting in several shows and directing CUDDLES for them.

Joe continued work with other companies - acting in OF MICE AND MEN for SATE and directing THE FLICK for R-S, as he was also acting in Midnight’s TITLE AND DEED from Will Eno.

Midnight then produced one of its biggest shows, JUDGMENT AT NUREMBERG at the Missouri History Museum, and the Company took part in Faustival - 5 St. Louis companies during their own version of the Faustus myth. Joe acted with SATE in John Wolbers’ original take on it, and Midnight reprised Mickle Maher’s Faustus show in a double bill with his HUNCHBACK VARIATIONS.

Joe then acted in THE CRUCIBLE for Stray Dog, and a number of Midnight shows - POPCORN FALLS, the one-person CHARLIE JOHNSON READS ALL OF PROUST, and his own script, an adaptation of a documentary film, A MODEL FOR MATISSE. During this time he continued to generate new scripts for Midnight appearances at the St. Louis Fringe and the St. Louis Crawl.

Going into the pandemic year, Joe squeezed in a couple of live performances before lockdown - GHOST at Metro Theater and SATE’s APHRA BEHN FESTIVAL.

COVID generated lots and lots of ZOOM shows and, and while Midnight had to cancel or reschedule its regularly scheduled shows, Joe contributed with a new script for St. Louis Shakespeare and a reading of one of his other scripts for the St. Louis Writers Group. He also acted in a number of ZOOM shows, including appearances in two scripts for playwright Hope Weiner for New York festivals. And Midnight did the ONLY live theatre performance during this terrible theatre-less time with a reprise production of Bogosian’s SEX, DRUGS, ROCK & ROLL in November.

Heading into (hopefully post-pandemic 2021, Midnight is poised to offer a full season of shows, including two Hanrahan original scripts.

In 2021, Midnight had a banner year, presenting four MainStage productions, a new original play for the Fringe and a revival of a short for the new Theatre Showcase.  The work paid off in award recognition.  The Theatre Critics Circle honored Midnight with a passel of nominations, and a big number of awards, including four acting awards for IT IS MAGIC (including Best Comedy Ensemble), and the Best New Play Award for Hanrahan’s TINSEL TOWN.

And in 2022, Midnight again had a busy schedule, with three MainStage shows (two originals by Hanrahan), and two shorts at the Theatre Showcase and the new TRUE Shorts Festival.

And at the time of this writing, Midnight is at work contemplating (and writing) new shows for ’23.  Stay tuned.

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Revised: October, 2007
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