EIGHT SCRIPTS CHOSEN FOR THE MFA PLAYWRIGHTS WORKSHOP
EIGHT SCRIPTS CHOSEN FOR THE MFA PLAYWRIGHTS WORKSHOP
PLAYS TO BE DEVELOPED AT THE JOHN F. KENNEDY CENTER FOR THE PERFORMING ARTS
WASHINGTON, DC - The NATIONAL NEW PLAY NETWORK (NNPN), the country’s alliance of non-profit theaters that champions the development, production, and continued life of new plays, in collaboration with the Kennedy Center’s American College Theater Festival and Stanford University’s National Center for New Plays, will host nearly fifty playwrights, directors and dramaturgs July 27 – August 4, 2013 as part of a week-long workshop for new works by MFA students from Indiana University, the Juilliard School, Northwestern University, University of Texas at Austin, and Yale School of Drama. A committee of NNPN Core Members has selected six scripts written by Michael Yates Crowley, Chad Eschman, Reina Hardy, Kelly P. Lusk, Tatiana Suarez-Pico, and Kate Tarker. The Workshop will also feature projects by alumni playwright Johnna Adams and Atlanta’s Alliance Theatre’s Kendeda Graduate Playwriting Prize-winner Madhuri Shekar.
This annual program pairs gifted early-career playwrights with directors from NNPN Core and Associate Member Theaters across the country, dramaturgs from a wider circle of theaters around the country, and an acting company from the Washington, DC community. The workshop will also feature the third annual New Play Dramaturgy Intensive, led by Mark Bly, and a Directing Intensive focusing on developing new work, led by Michael Rau.
THE SELECTED SCRIPTS:
THE TOURISTS by Michael Yates Crowley, the Juilliard School
THE TOURISTS by Michael Yates Crowley, the Juilliard School
Directed by Freddie Ashley (Actor’s Express, Atlanta)
Dramaturg Janice Paran (Sundance Institute Theatre Program, New Jersey)
THE MEMORY TAX by Chad Eschman, Northwestern University
Directed by Stefan Brun (PROP Thtr, Chicago)
Dramaturg Kristin Leahey (Northlight Theatre, Chicago)
THE CLAIRE PLAY by Reina Hardy, University of Texas at Austin
Directed by Susanna Gellert (CENTERSTAGE, Baltimore)
Dramaturg Mead Hunter (New Harmony Project, Indianapolis)
(a love story) by Kelly P. Lusk, Indiana University
Directed by Tina Parker (Kitchen Dog Theater, Dallas)
Dramaturg Mark Bly (Hunter College, New York)
FLESH AND BLOOD by Tatiana Suarez-Pico, the Julliard School
Directed by Lisa Adler (Horizon Theatre Company, Atlanta)
Dramaturg Mark Routhier (Orlando Shakespeare Theatre, Orlando)
AN ALMANAC FOR FARMERS AND LOVERS IN MEXICO by Kate Tarker, Yale School of Drama
Directed by Jim Petosa (New Repertory Theatre, Watertown, MA)
Dramaturg Adrien-Alice Hansel (Studio Theatre, Washington, DC)
Alliance Theatre’s Kendeda Graduate Playwriting Prize-winner
IN LOVE AND WARCRAFT by Madhuri Shekar, University of Southern California
Directed by TBA
Dramaturg Celise Kalke (Alliance Theatre, Atlanta)
LINGUA IGNOTA by Johnna Adams
Directed by John Pietrowski (Playwrights Theatre of New Jersey, Madison)
Dramaturg Gavin Witt (CENTERSTAGE, Baltimore)
ABOUT THE SELECTED PLAYWRIGHTS
Johnna Adams received the Steinberg/American Theatre Critics Association Citation in April 2013 for Gidion’s Knot. She is the 2011 recipient of the Princess Grace Award and a 2012 Finalist for the Susan Smith Blackburn Award. As a playwright so far, she has mingled with an all-inmate cast at the Mitchellville Theatre Project at the Iowa Women’s Correctional Institution (In the Absence of Angels, 2006) and participated in a fully nude talkback in front of a nude audience at the Naturist Society’s Western Naturist Gathering at the Lupin Naturist Club (Nude on the Beach, 2002). The Contemporary American Theatre Festival produced her play Gidion’s Knot in Shepherdtown, WV, the summer of 2012 and Flux Theatre Ensemble produced her play Sans Merci in its 2012-13 season in New York. Her play Lickspittles, Buttonholers, and Damned Pernicious Go-Betweens will be produced by Impetuous Theatre in 2012. Johnna’s plays Angel Eaters, Rattlers, 8 Little Antichrists, Sans Merci, Cockfightersand The Sacred Geometry of S&M Porn are published by Original Works Publishing (www.originalworksonline.com). Johnna graduated from the DePaul University Theatre School with a BFA in Acting and received a 2012 MFA in Playwriting from Hunter College with Tina Howe and with Mark Bly. Her play Skinless was developed at the 2012 MFA Playwrights’ Workshop at the Kennedy Center.
Michael Yates Crowley is a Brooklyn-based playwright and performer. His work has been produced in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Berlin, and Edinburgh, among other cities. His plays include Evanston: A Rare Comedy (selected for the 2013 O’Neill National Playwrights Conference); Song of a Convalescent Ayn Rand Giving Thanks to the Godhead... (Joe's Pub, IRT); Righteous Money (3-Legged-Dog, 59E59 Theaters, Edinburgh Fringe); and The Ted Haggard Monologues (published by S. Fischer Verlag; filmed by HBO and adapted for feature film by Harmonium Films & Music). In New York, his work has been seen at The Public Theater, Rattlestick Playwrights Theater, PS 122, HERE Arts Center, 3LD, Dixon Place, the Bushwick Starr, and Ars Nova. He is a graduate of the Soho Rep Writer/Director Lab and former Artist-in-Residence at the Tribeca Performing Arts Center with Michael Rau and their theater company, Wolf 359. He was a Fellow in Playwriting from the New York Foundation for the Arts, and is a current member of the Lila Acheson Wallace American Playwrights Program at Juilliard. Since 2005 he has curated Hearth Gods, a reading series in the East Village.
Chad Eschman Chad Eschman is a playwright interested in the collaborative creation of new works, whose plays often explore concepts of family and identity in strange, dystopian worlds. He holds an MFA from Northwestern University’s Writing for Screen and Stage program, and a BA in Theatre and Dance from Santa Clara University. He is a founding member of Cardboard Box Theatre Project in California, and of Living Room Playmakers in Chicago, with whom he is currently working on developing new plays (www.lrplays.org). Chad has worked as a writer and actor with Montalvo Arts Center, UC Berkeley, Berkeley Rep, SubZERO Festival, Santa Clara University, Renegade Theatre Experiment, Northwestern University, WORKS/San Jose, and Southwark Playhouse (London).chadeschman.com
Reina Hardy is a playwright from Chicago who recently fetched up in Texas. She is a Michener Fellow, a 2013 finalist for the Terrence McNally Prize, and the recipient of the 2012 Interact 20/20 Commission. Her plays, which usually contain magic, have most recently been seen at Capital Stage Sacramento, Las Vegas Little Theatre, Orlando Shakespeare, and the Great Plains Theatre Conference, where Reina was awarded the Holland New Voices Award. This summer, she'll be headed to the Kennedy Center to workshop her as-yet untitled script about the universe and hangovers.
Kelly P. Lusk recently completed his second year in the MFA Playwriting program at Indiana University with Ken Weitzman. Workshop productions include: The Day We Fell in Love and The Girl Who Ate the World. Original works produced in the Indianapolis Fringe Festival include: Seems to Fit, We the Boys, Caffeine/Nicotine (co-written with Courtney Crary), and Love/Out. In the summer of 2009 he was invited to study in Umbria, Italy with Charles Mee through La Mama ETC. Lusk is also a two-time recipient of the Indiana Repertory Theater’s Young Playwrights in Process Award.
Madhuri Shekar is a Los Angeles based playwright, currently pursuing an MFA in Dramatic Writing at USC. She was born in California and grew up in India, and writes on themes of love, relationships and sexuality inspired by her cross-cultural background. She is the 2014 winner of the Kendeda Graduate Playwriting Contest held by the Alliance Theatre in Atlanta for her play In Love and Warcraft. Her play A Nice Indian Boywon second prize in the East West Players 2012 Face of the Future Playwriting Contest, and her screenplay The Arrangement was a semi-finalist for the 2012 Nicholl Fellowship in Screenwriting administered by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. She has trained in classical South Indian (Carnatic) violin and dance (Bharatanatyam), and has dabbled with stand-up comedy. She has a double Masters degree in Global Media and Communications from the London School of Economics and USC, and divides her time between Los Angeles and Chennai, India.
Tatiana Suarez-Pico is an actress, writer, and teacher. As an actress she has performed extensively in New York City and in 2010 was selected to be a part of the Old Vic's US/UK TS Eliot Exchange. Tatiana has worked as a freelance writer for publications such as Latin Week NY, Back Stage, and is the co-creator of BodegaAve, a bilingual webcomic which focused on multicultural teens living in Brooklyn, NY. Tatiana received a “Groundbreaking Latina” Award from Catalina Magazine for her work on BodegaAve. In 2011, her play 443 was developed at Rising Circle Theater Collective and in the Spring 2012, 443 was selected as a finalist for the Leah Ryan Prize for Emerging Women Writers. Her play Profit was a finalist for the Old Vic's 2013 US/UK TS Eliot Exchange and her short play Cravings was produced by Piper Theater Company in 2012 and will be published in their anthology "Smart Plays for Young Actors." Other publications: IndieTheaterNow.com, ESPA/Primary StagesDetention Series. Fellowships: Lila Acheson Wallace American Playwrights Program at The Juilliard School, Dramatist Guild Fellows Program, Mary Louise Rockwell Scholar at ESPA/Primary Stages. Tatiana is the author ofProfit, LRTC, 443, Flesh & Blood, Dog Day, Mountain Air, Like Water, and She among others. She has taught acting at Essex County Community College and in the New York public school system through various after-school programs. MFA, Actors Studio Drama School/New School University.
Kate Tarker is a playwright & director currently living in New Haven. Her plays include: The Green (recipient of the Kennedy Center ACTF’s National Science Playwriting Award), Laura and the Sea, An Almanac for Farmers and Lovers in Mexico, Concertina, and Paper Cut. Her work has been produced or developed at Yale, 59E59 Theaters, LOCAL lab, and Theater Row via the Theater Masters National MFA Playwrights Festival. She has received a MacDowell Colony Fellowship, a Kaspar T. Locher Scholarship, and a Stephen B. Timbers Scholarship. At the Yale Cabaret, she recently directed all of what you love and none of what you hate, a new play by Phillip Howze; she also co-created the devised piece, Cat Club. Kate is a member of the Dramatists Guild. B.A. Reed College. M.F.A. candidate, Yale School of Drama ’14.
The National New Play Network (NNPN) is the country’s alliance of non-profit professional theaters that champions the development, production, and continued life of new plays. Since its founding in 1998, NNPN has commissioned almost two dozen playwrights, provided nineteen MFA graduates with paid residencies, and supported more than 100 productions nationwide through its innovative Continued Life of New Plays Fund, which creates “rolling world premieres” of new plays. Hundreds of artists have gained employment through these efforts in the dozens of regions of the country where NNPN member theaters are located. NNPN receives substantial support from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust, the Shubert Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts. The Network is comprised of a relatively small group of Core Members, who pioneer and implement collaborative new play strategies, and a growing group of Associate Members, who disseminate the Network's programs and strategies nationwide.
ABOUT THE KENNEDY CENTER’S AMERICAN COLLEGE THEATER FESTIVAL
The Michael Kanin Playwriting Awards program of KCACTF is sponsored by the National Committee for the Performing Arts, the Kennedy Center Corporate Fund and the Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust. Distinguished Alumni of the program include Paula Vogel, Lee Blessing, Jim Leonard, Phoef Sutton, Matt Williams, Quiara Alegría Hudes, Sarah Ruhl, Kirsten Greenidge, Marco Ramirez, Molly Smith Metzler, Ronan Noone, Nathan Louis Jackson and Katori Hall.