The Ontological-Hysteric Theater, founded by Richard Foreman in 1968, seeks to produce works that balance a primitive and minimal style with extremely complex and theatrical themes. The core of the company's annual programming is Richard Foreman's theater pieces, of which he has made over 50 in the last 40 years, though the theater also focuses on fostering the work of emerging artists who follow in Foreman’s compositional theater-making footsteps.
The theater began as an “art-oriented” project in the early days of Soho’s experimental art community. After several years in Soho, the OHT moved to venues with wider audiences, including a multi-year ‘home’ with Joseph Papp’s New York Shakespeare Festival. In 1992, The Ontological-Hysteric Theater found a more permanent home in St. Mark’s Church in New York City. It was at this time that the Ontological began its programming for and development of emerging artists, which was formalized in 2005 under the name Incubator.