Midge Guerrera’s play Email: 9/12 was recently published on Indie Theater Now and within a couple of weeks she hit the front page of her local paper The Hillsborough Beacon. News sure travels fast. Read the article. Read the play.
This item from Marcin Lipinski, Communications Rep
“Submit your piece to this wonderful solo group” said Fiona Shaw, winner of 2013 Untied Solo Special Award and United Solo Academy member, “with a bit of luck you’ll have your show shown in the center mecca of solo shows in the world.”
The fifth annual United Solo Theatre Festival invites local and international artists to submit their shows to the world’s largest solo theatre festival. World premieres and already-produced shows are equally welcome. Submitted proposals may represent storytelling, improv, dance, musical, puppetry, multimedia, stand-up, magic, tragedy, comedy, and other forms of solo performance. Selected shows will be presented between September 18 and November 23, 2014 at Theatre Row in New York City. The deadline for submissions is Monday, March 3, 2014.
The Festival’s mission is to build the community of solo performers and connect them to New York audiences. Last season, the eight‑week Festival featured over 120 solo productions from six continents. This year, in an extended ten‑week run, the Festival will once again offer top notch productions by renowned artists and emerging talents. Artists benefit from presenting their works in the world‑famous theatre district on 42nd Street. Theatre companies are given the opportunity to reach the industry, generate income from ticket sales from up to eight shows at the Festival, and receive media attention through previews, profiles, reviews, and other articles. Shows are also considered for participation in the exclusive United Solo showcase in Europe, as well as for play publication and awards for best acting, best directing, and the audience choice award. Winners from past seasons include Pedro Almodovar, Gordon Clapp, Ann Morrison, Austin Pendleton, LynnMarie Rink, and Eric Roberts.
Many of the awarded artists will be invited to join the United Solo Academy, a creative group that helps the Festival nominate and select solo performers to receive the annual United Solo Special Award. Nominees for this year’s special recognition will be announced in the spring. Over the past few years, this honorary prize was presented to Anna Deavere Smith, Patti LuPone, John Leguizamo, and Fiona Shaw.
More information and the application form can be found at www.unitedsolo.org
I’m excited to present Plays and Playwrights 2014, a collection of some of the outstanding new American theater works that were presented during the most recent theatrical season and published on Indie Theater Now.
The eleven plays included here all had their world premieres between September 1, 2012 and August 31, 2013. I deliberately did not include anything from the 2013 New York International Fringe Festival, since it has its own collection on ITN. Otherwise, in curating this group, I stuck to the principles I have always used in creating our annual play anthologies:
- The plays are the work of new, emerging and/or relatively unheralded playwrights whose voices deserve to heard by a much broader audience.
- The plays challenge the status quos of contemporary dramaturgy and/or contemporary American life.
- The plays enlarge or expand the way that audiences experience theater.
So here’s what we have here: To begin, a triptych of plays that zero in on 21st century life with such sharpness and incisiveness that they almost knock the wind out of you. Penny Jackson’s I Know What Boys Want looks at a problem that never even existed until a couple years ago, focusing on a group of teenage boys who–knowingly or not–destroy a girl’s reputation when they post some X-rated video of her on the internet. Penny wisely shows us many differing perspectives as she examines the ways that technology enables certain kinds of human behaviors and points toward new norms that need to be established to cope with that. Lindsay Joy, in her remarkable Rise and Fall of a Teenage Cyberqueen, probes what seems to be the new American social order, depicting a very broken family consisting of mother, second husband, and two teenage kids, all searching rather desperately for the love and recognition they are somehow unable to give each other. And Dennis Flanagan’s immensely moving how i learned to become a SUPERHERO gives us three damaged young adults attempting to deal with the pain and injustice and hurt they see all around them by willing themselves super powers, with results that bring them to the brink of both tragedy and madness.
Next, a pair of plays that deal with the lives of two famous playwrights but otherwise are as different as it’s possible to be. Richard Warren’s Burning in the Night, which premiered in Arizona last year, is inspired by the life of Dale Wasserman (Man of la Mancha, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest), focusing on his years riding the rails with hobos during the Great Depression. Weaving in folk songs of the period and lots of local color, this is a touching and involving look at one man’s path to success as well as our neglected collective past. August Strindberg is the subject of Edward Elefterion’s stark and evocative ALONE, a work whose title gives away its primary theme, which is that the task of making great art is one of the loneliest occupations known to man. Created in Ed’s signature minimalist style, ALONE. nonetheless contains rich humor and a host of memorable characters as it depicts the great Swedish author at a turning point in his career.
Timothy Nolan’s What’s in a Name is also based on a true story, that of Katherine Power, who lived for decades under an assumed identity after escaping from the police during a botched bank robbery that turned murderous. Tim’s work is fiction though, and is a bona fide thriller, as we trace–through flashbacks–the long-stored secrets of its heroine; and also, compellingly, an exploration of identity and reputation and memory. The question posed by the play’s title is thoroughly examined here, with memorable and insightful results.
Less traditional dramatic form is represented here by Nightmares: A Demonstration of the Sublime, written by Adam R. Burnett and presented by Buran Theatre at the Brick in Williamsburg, NYC, before embarking on a multi-city tour that lasted most of 2013. Content and form collide and fold back upon themselves in this post-dramatic work, which juxtaposes a couple of storylines as it explores ideas of originality, beauty, and art. It’s madcap and surprising and funny and off-the-wall; also remarkably smart and timely as it ponders how anything can be new in an era where technology facilitates instantaneous copying and sharing.
The ubiquitous ten-minute play form gets a thrilling revitalization in a pair of programs, both entitled Test. Bill LoCasto contributes three short plays for casts of 2 men while Cheryl King offers four made for 1 man and 1 woman. All turn on the newfangled HIV home test, and explicitly deal with a couple in which one or both will undergo the test in realtime. Test reflects contemporary sexuality and relationships in a most refreshing way, and offers outstanding opportunities for actors of every age and talent.
We’ve also got a solo play here, which is appropriate because this particular genre is undergoing a real boom right now in terms of both quality and quantity. The one I’ve selected is Linda Lovely Goes to Broadway, a gorgeous, touching piece about a young woman with Down’s Syndrome whose dream is to star in Oklahoma! on the Great White Way. With the help of a dedicated teacher (Ann Morrison, who wrote and performed this piece at the 2012 United Solo Festival), Linda Lovely gets her wish. This is a play about love, dedication, commitment, and dreams.
Finally, North to Maine by Brenton Lengel reminds us that theater, even produced on a small budget in the indie sector, and even with just a few characters on stage, has the potential to be epic. It’s about a group of people who are walking the length of the Appalachian Trail–all 2000+ miles (something that the playwright himself has done). North to Maine is about what it means to be human and how and why our capacity to strive for greatness finally defines us.
I am proud and honored to present all of these extraordinary plays and playwrights to readers in this new collection. Every one is ripe for performance, and worthy of study and discussion. Have at them, and enjoy!
(Thanks to Cate Cammarata for suggesting that we create this collection!)
This item from Kristin Skye Hoffmann
Wide Eyed Productions is hosting our second installment of the WINKS Reading Series, but this time with a twist! We will be focusing exclusively on original plays by local NYC playwrights! Wide Eyed Productions is excited to continue its work on new American plays like the award winning Animals by Sam Byron and the upcoming New York premiere of Dan Kitrosser’s Dead Special Crabs, but we had such a good response to our last reading series, we wanted the fun to continue.
Presenting: THE SEVEN DEADLY WINKS
Each month at the Drama League Center, we will feature a twenty minute segment from three original works by three different writers which are related to, or inspired by, that month’s “sin.” At the end of each night the audience will be invited to select their favorite of the evening by casting an anonymous ballot. The majority favorite will be named a semifinalist and be invited to submit a full text* to Wide Eyed Productions’ Artistic Board for consideration for our final round.
Two overall finalists will be chosen and given a full staged reading of their plays at the end of the WINKS series, and one winning text will be chosen based on audience and board votes. This winning text will then be submitted to the New York International Fringe Festival for production.
What you need to know:
- The play does not need to be a World Premiere.
- The play does not need to be a fully completed text when it is initially submitted.
- Musicals will be considered as long as they are submitted with a music sample.
- Directors and casts will be provided by Wide Eyed, but we love it when you have suggestions for people you love to work with!
- Please submit selections of text, treatments, and other support material to firstname.lastname@example.org along with the “sin(s)” you think it matches by January 15, 2014.
* The full text is not to exceed a 90 minute estimated run time. Semifinalists will be given a deadline for submissions of full texts.
This item from 29th Street Rep
HUGE, OPEN SPACE! Available DAYS & WEEKENDS ! Perfect for a holiday party! NY Eve is still available!
Altered Stages 2 One large space (56′ X 22′) with (16′ X 17′) lounge.
24 Hour access, Doorman. Very safe, Right off the 1 train (28th/Seventh), 2 refrigerators, microwave, Hot & cold water in space, many set pieces, New sprung floor!! Little outside noise, Storage lockers, Great natural light. CLEAN & CLASSY!
Let’s talk. Contact David 646 271-1004
This item from Marcus Yi
The Planet Connections Theatre Festivity, New York’s premiere eco-friendly/socially conscious, not-for-profit theatre festival, is currently accepting submissions for its 2014 season. The festivity accepts all topics and subject matters including but not limited to: new works, musicals, adaptations, one-acts, and solo shows. For details and an application please visit www.planetconnections.org. The deadline for early acceptance submissions is January 7th. The festivity will take place in May and June 2014 at The Paradise Factory located at 64 E. 4th Street, directly next door to La Mama.
The Festivity is designed to invoke the power of art in motivating philanthropy, community outreach and social change. Planet Connections artists use their work to shed light on the causes that matter, while inspiring audiences to get involved. Theatre for a cause is about recognizing and utilizing the power of art to change the world. Planet Connections artists are introduced to a community of like-minded performers, designers, directors and producers. The relationships formed during the festivity allow talented artists to find new audiences and forge new partnerships.
This item from Craig Smith
PHOENIX THEATRE ENSEMBLE ANNOUNCES 2ND ANNUAL “FIRST STORIES FESTIVAL” MAY 2014
PERFORMANCES & PRODUCTIONS INVITED
Phoenix Theatre Ensemble, a resident theatre ensemble now in its 10th season, announces its 2nd Annual “FIRST STORIES FESTIVAL” to coincide with the company’s May 2014 Spring Rep will take place at The Wild Project (195 East 3 Street, NY, NY) in New York’s East Village from May 2nd through May 24, 2014.
The FIRST STORIES FESTIVAL is inviting submissions of productions (full productions, staged readings, dance, music, puppetry, etc.) of theatre productions that are based on, inspired by, the myths and tales of the past. Stories handed down to us by the ancients, by poets, playwrights, and elders from all lands, all peoples and all cultures as brought forth by creative interpretations, adaptations, and explorations of the vibrant characters and themes of the dramas, comedies, and stories of humanity and their relation to self, the natural world, the spirit world and to one another. This year, in an intentional decision to encourage universal inclusivity, the company is expanding the submissions process to include works from all over the world, from all peoples. Productions can be new to the stage or previously presented. We accept submissions of all genres and all disciplines, and encourage artists of all cultures, ethnicities, genders, and LGBT, to submit.
Festival coordinator and Artistic Director Elise Stone states “We were inspired by the creativity, passion, bravery and innovation of last year’s Festival artists. We regretted having to turn away so many wonderful productions which had been inspired by sources that were not specifically from the early Greeks in origin, but from other original sources, and decided to widen the parameters to create a forum for all “First Stories” — we are looking forward to the rich diversity of works this will bring to the Festival this season.”
Information and Festival Guidelines may be obtained by emailing festival@PhoenixTheatreEnsemble.org .