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MULTISTAGES 2013 NEW WORKS CONTEST
JANUARY 14-20, 2014
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This spring and summer, our fabulous team of judges has been reading and scoring an impressive array of multidisciplinary and multicultural new works from across the country. After much deliberation and multiple rounds, we are thrilled to announce the Winner and Finalists.
Drum Roll …… And the 2013 New Works Contest WINNER is:
COMIDA DE PUTA (F%&KING LOUSY FOOD) by Desi Moreno-Penson -- Phaedra in the Bronx. A bodega owner's wife is obsessed with her husband's son, the lunch counter boy, and not even her confidant, the neighborhood 'spiritual' woman, can help her.
NEW WORKS FESTIVALS
Deborah and her foreign correspondent husband are a young American couple living in New Delhi in 1963. A relationship with an Indian bookseller leads Deborah to discover a mysterious spiritual connection to ancient Indian myth, but myth spills into reality in this powerful, political, and poetic piece.
After Jesse Colton's wife is lynched in Mississippi for allegedly being a communist, he escapes to Harlem, joins a revolutionary movement and heads to Spain to fight Franco. Step back in time to the 1930s in this passionate, bilingual play that will keep you on the edge of your seat!
Opera diva Alice Silverstein (the "Oprah of Opera"), is receiving a Kennedy Center Honor when her abandoned, drunk, teenage son Dwyane, crashes onto the stage triggering a scandal hat brings this diva down. See Alice rise and fall, and rise again, in this one-of-a-kind rock 'n opera fusion.
KAREN HARTMAN (Co-writer, Composer) is a comedy writer/performer, composer, lyricist and librettist. She began as an opera singer, winning the prestigious Metropolitan Opera Audition on the West Coast. Unable to keep a straight face with opera, she wrote a stand up act and entered the comedy world. One of the first female comediennes, she was a regular at The Comedy Store in Los Angeles for ten years, and developed a one and a half woman show, Diva Takes a Dive which toured nationwide. Writing/ Music credits include HBO Comedy Specials, Showtime, and nationally syndicated television. She appeared and starred in movies and television series, and is a member of The Dramatists Guild, National Board of Review, AEA, SAG and AFTRA. She is winner of Caroline’s Comedy Competition, “The Funniest Woman in America,” and L.A. First Class as “The Best of the Best.” Karen lives and laughs with her husband in NYC. www.dancingwithabandon.com
On the Caribbean Island of Dolphina, exiled marine biologists Gwendolyn and Marlin Welles await the birth of their daughter. No one knows why the expectant Gwendolyn’s skin has a silvery glow or why she consumes live fish from the aquarium until an ultrasound reveals her secret. Enter a strange new world that explores the future consequences of global warming, toxic oceans, motherhood and the magic of voodoo.
MARY FENGAR GAIL’S plays include Drink Me, Opaline, and Devil Dog Six. She has had plays developed at the Utah Shakespearean Festival, the New York Stage and Film Company, and the Eugene O’Neill National Playwrights Conference. Full productions were performed at the InterAct Theatre of Philadelphia, the New Jersey Repertory Company, the Seanachai Theatre of Chicago, and Theatre Conspiracy of Florida. Ms. Gail is a recipient of the Arnold Weissberger Award administered by New Dramatists, the National Children’s Theatre Award, and the Playwrights First Award. She recently received commissions from New Jersey Repertory, the Salt Lake Acting Company, South Coast Repertory, and the National New Play Network, as well as a playwriting fellowship from the California Arts Council.
June 1964: Black Civil Rights workers teach non-violent tactics to hundreds of white volunteers en route to Mississippi to help register blacks to vote. Jessica, a young white volunteer, has no idea how dangerous ─ emotionally and physically ─ the project will be until she falls in love with a young black Civil Rights worker and three workers disappear in Mississippi.
ADAM KRAAR’S plays include New World Rhapsody (Manhattan Theatre Club commission); The Spirit House (finalist, Actors Theatre of Louisville Humana Festival; premiered at Performance Network of Ann Arbor); The Abandoned El (Illinois Theatre Center); Storm In The Iron Box (National Play Award runner-up), and The Lost Cities of Asher (New River Dramatists fellowship). Plays produced and developed at: Primary Stages, N.Y. Stage and Film, N.Y. Shakespeare Festival, Ensemble Studio, Theatreworks U.S.A, Rude Mechanicals, H.B. Playwrights Theatre, Geva Theatre, Bloomington Playwrights Project and others. Awards: Sewanee Writers’ Conference, Inge Center for the Arts fellowship, Millay Colony (Berilla Kerr fellowship), Southeastern Theatre Conference, Manhattan Theatre Club playwriting fellowship. M.F.A., Columbia University. Plays published by Dramatic, Applause and Smith & Kraus. Adam grew up in India, Thailand, Singapore and the U.S. Visit www.adamkraar.com
In this mythical tale told with music, dancing, and puppetry, a Soviet submarine sinks off the coast of Hawaii and President Nixon relies on Howard Hughes’ brilliance and money to raise the sub and their spiraling careers. Aided by an aging starlet and subservient Mormon counsel, Nixon gains access to the ailing, drug addled Hughes, and the rest is history, or is it?
NICK ZAGONE’S plays have been enjoyed throughout the US and the world. Awards include: Mark A. Klein Playwriting Award, Artistic Director’s Achievement Award by San Fernando Valley Theatre League Alliance, Los Angeles Ovation Award Nomination, Fulton Opera House Award, JAW Festival Selection, Northwest Playwright’s Series Finalist, Seattle Times Footlight Award, Prospect Theatre Project Competition Winner, Northwest Playwright’s Series Finalist and Winner of Lamia Ink! One-Page Play Competition. Nick is the Founding Member of Open Circle Theatre in Seattle WA. Theatre Companies include: Cal-State Stanislaus, Stage 3, No-Shame Theatre, Mark Taper Forum, Seattle Repertory Theatre, ACT & Printer’s Devil. Commissions include: Sierra Repertory Theatre, Iron Ring Theatre and Prospect Theatre. Nick is also a screenwriter and is published by Dramatic Publishing and Black Box Press.
Fear of a Führer is a performance collage of the unexpected, told through song, puppetry, poetry, and a mix of theatrical genres. A cacophony of sound, music, and historical dialogue is interwoven through a love story of searchers for peace in a time of war.
Abi Basch is a playwright and director whose plays and performance installations have been presented at the Bay Area Playwrights Festival, Brave New Works in Atlanta, Fusebox, PulseWorks, and Out of Ink in Austin, Best Feet Forward in Minneapolis, hotINK! in New York City, and Transeuropa in Hildesheim, Germany. She's received three Austin Critics Table award nominations, been a finalist for the Weissberger Award at Williamstown and for PlayLabs at the Playwrights’ Center in Minneapolis, and received Best of Fest in Fronterafest. She has developed plays and performance installations collaboratively with Live Action Set and the Soap Factory in Minneapolis, and Refraction Arts Project and Physical Plant Theater in Austin. Abi is a core member of Austin Script Works, has received two Jerome Fellowships from the Playwrights' Center, and a Fulbright Fellowship for research on collaborative physical-theater methods in Germany. She holds an AB in History from Brown University and an MFA in Playwriting from The University of Texas at Austin.
What Comes Next treks cross-country in a timelessly traveling wagon train of abstract realism. On the trail we meet Ulysses S. Grant, Marilyn Monroe, and Charlie Parker Atlas. With humor and pathos, we are forced to examine our country, people, and endless struggles.
Pamela A. Popeson’s first full-length play, The Bigger Thing, premiered Off-Off Broadway at the Red Room (Born Slippery Productions, May 2002), it was optioned by True Love Productions for Off-Broadway following performances at Fringe ‘02 in Edinburgh, Scotland at the Bedlam Theatre. Other full-lengths: Miss Weekends (developed and read at The Living Room in New York City, January 2004), and What Comes Next, began during a granted residency at the Norcroft Writer Retreat for Women in Minnesota, 2004. One-acts: The Moat (premiered at the New Orleans Center for Contemporary Art as “Featured Artist” in Dramarama 12 Performing Arts Festival, 2005), The Spy (8 Minute Madness Festival, Turtleshell Productions, NYC 2004), Up on the Beach written for Terrepin Productions, 2004, The Climber (New Orleans Dramarama 11), and Alas Poor Spike. Popeson is a frequent contributor to NYARTS Magazine and COVER Magazine, writing articles on art and art culture. She is a member of the Dramatist Guild of America and The Playwright’s Center.
The Torment takes us back to a time of blacks who owned slaves, concubines, and the fight for freedom in turbulent antebellum New Orleans. The mysterious and dramatic plot twists and turns until it reveals tormented truths buried under the skin.
Nicole Quinn has written for HBO, Showtime, the networks and Jodie Foster's Egg Pictures. Her play, War at Home, written with award-winning writer Nina Shengold and some 40 high school students and community members, is published by Playscripts, Inc. and in the anthology Under Thirty, Vintage Originals. Playscripts will publish Odds & Ends, a collection of Quinn's short plays in 2005, and Information in 2006. Information was a 2005 Samuel French Off-Off Broadway Play Festival participant. She is a member of Actors & Writers. Quinn's current endeavors are to be found at http://www.racingdaylightthemovie.com, featuring Melissa Leo and David Strathairn.
Skeletons of a man and woman locked in an erotic embrace are unearthed by an American archaeologist in 1930's Peru in this thrilling mystery of secrets, spirits, and love.
CHRIS LONGO is New York born and raised, and received a BA from Queens College and an MGA in Playwriting from the University of Hawaii. He has spent his life teaching, writing and working in amateur and academic theatre. He has lived in Hawaii, Los Angeles, Monte Carlo, Florence, Rome and Lima, Peru. He currently resides in Buenos Aires, Argentina, where he writes, teaches and performs in English language theatre. Awards include John Golden Award, Peter Pauper Press Prize, National Repertory Theatre Foundation Award, and the Office of Advance Drama Research Sponsorship. As a film writer, he has written for John Travolta Productions (Orion), Fata Morgana Films (Argentina), KCET Public TV (Los Angeles), and others.
This poetical play of comfort women in WWII Japan was inspired by the author's interviews of Korean women abducted as teenagers and forced into prostitution. Lavonne Mueller is the recipient of numerous awards, including NEA and Rockefeller fellowships
LAVONNE MUELLER is the author of numerous plays, including Letters To A Daughter From Prison about Nehru and daughter Indira (First International Festival of the Arts in NYC, and on tour in India); Violent Peace (London production; Time Out Magazine "Critics Choice"); Little Victories (Bryna Wortman directed at the Women's Project; Riho Mitachi directed at Theatre Classic Productions, Tokyo); The Only Woman General (Bryna Wortman directed at the Women's Project, starring Colleen Dewhurst; Edinburgh Festival "Pick of the Fringe"). Awards include Roger Stevens Playwriting Award, a Guggenheim Grant, a Rockefeller Grant, three National Endowment for the Arts Grants, a Fulbright to Argentina, an Asian Culture Council Grant to Calcutta, and a U.S. Friendship Commission Grant to Japan. Ms. Mueller is a Woodrow Wilson Scholar and a Lila Wallace Reader's Digest Writing Fellow. Her plays and monologues are published by Dramatist Play Service, Samuel French, Applause Books, Performing Arts Journal, Theatre Communication Group, Heinemann Books and Baker's Plays. Her play Hotel Splendid was in a 2001 festival with Boston Theatre Works, and received the 2001 award for outstanding drama opposing war and injustice, given by Peace Writing, directed by Dick Bennett, and sponsored by the consortium of peace, research, and development (COPRED). Ms. Mueller also taught at Columbia University for five years.
On a fictitious Argentine island, a widower father of an infant with a defective heart decrees that she be raised in a paradise where all language is sung, all yearnings fulfilled and all men are absent.
MARY FENGAR GAIL plays include: Drink Me, Fuschia, Jambulu, The Garden on F Street and The Wormwood Chronical. She has had readings, workshops and productions at Sundance Institute, The Eugene O'Neill National Playwrights Conference, the Lark Theatre, the InterAct Theatre of Philadelphia, and the Kitchen Dog Theatre of Dallas. Her awards include Arnold Weissberger Award (New Dramatists), the TheatreFest Playwrighting Competition, the National Children's Theatre Festival Award, Stanley Drama Award (Wagner College), Santa Fe Performing Arts Co. Playwriting Competition, Crossing Borders Playwriting Contest (Wharf Rat Productions), and the Rte 66 Great American Playwriting Competition (Vortex Theatre, New Mexico). She has received commissions from South Coast Repertory of Costa Mesa and the National New Play Network; and a playwriting fellowship from the California Arts Council.
NAOMI LAZARD started writing as a poet in a workshop with John Logan at the University of Chicago. She has published six books of poetry, a book of translations of the poetry from the Urdu of Faiz Ahmed Faiz (the beloved 20th century Pakistani poet) (Princeton University Press); a book for children (Greenwillow), short stories, screenplays and is the author of “The Elephant and the Dove.” Awards and Grants: Ann Stanford Memorial Award (1998); National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship for Translation (of Faiz Ahmed Faiz from the Urdu) (1996); Ordinances selected as best book by Writers' Choice (1985); Traveling and Writing Grant; University of Montana (1981); National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship (Poetry) (1981); CAPS Grant: New York State Council on the Arts (Poetry) (1979); Ferguson Award; Friends of Literature in Chicago for The Moonlit Upper Deckerina (1978); di Castagnola Award; The Poetry Society of America for Ordinances manuscript (1977); 1976: FELS Award for poems from Ordinances (1976); CAPS Grant: New York State Council on the Arts (Poetry) (1975) Ms. Lazard is working on a new comedic play entitled “With all Due Respect.” In addition to writing, she is a graphic artist, and very involved with the Hamptons International Film Festival. A Dramatist Guild member.
Lions On The Nile by Michael Murphy (a recent NYC transplant via San Francisco) is an epic docudrama set in 1855, that follows the historic expeditions of Captain Sir Richard F. Burton and Captain John Speke as they search Africa for the source of the Nile, and the scandalous relationship that develops between them.
MICHAEL MURPHY "Lions on the Nile" received a staged reading at FirstStage, a new play development group founded by the Sundance Theatre Lab, and a Brown Foundation Development grant for historical plays. Michael is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society in London, which sponsored the Burton-Speke expeditions dramatized in the play. His play, "The Debating Society,” appeared at Denver Center Theatre's TheatreFest this past June, directed by Randall Myler. "The Legendary St. Vincent Design" appeared at the Wings Theatre in New York this past July/August, directed by Jules Ochoa. Both plays were developed at The Playwrights Lab in San Francisco, a playwrights collective that received a NEA grant for new play development. Other plays: "Absolute Reality" (Nat Horner Theater, NYC), "The Book of Jeremy" (White-Willis New Play Award; Finalist, Jerome Fellowship; Finalist, Julie Harris Beverly Hills Theatre Guild Festival); "My Mother Danced with Frank Sinatra" (Finalist, ALR New Play Search), "The Hatmaker" (Finalist, Key West New Play Festival) and "Like Noah Rain" (Blue Bear Theatre). Screenplays: the short film, "Time's Arrow" (1996), and the feature, "The Light of Day" (Honorable Mention, Monterey Film Festival and currently under option for production in 2001). Michael moved to NYC from San Francisco last year. A Dramatist Guild member.
SURF by Georgian playwright David Mushcell is a two-act play that brings the internet to the stage through a contemporary chat room, and the emotional relationships that result. The play presents an original concept: the actual chat room dialogue is projected onto the stage.
DAVID MUSCHELL’s work as a playwright has resulted in four national and five regional awards, including the Southeast Playwrights’ Competition, the Little Nashville Competition sponsored by Feedback Theatrebooks, and the Stage3 New Play Competition. Ten of his plays have been published. His most widely produced, “Mixed Emotions,” has been seen in twenty-three states, Canada, and Japan. He also writes nonfiction, including two books on word origins, Where in the Word? and What in the Word? He is an assistant professor at Georgia College & State University in Milledgeville, Georgia, where he teaches English, speech, and creative writing. Mr. Muschell just completed a one-act comedy, “Muriel and Abby Find Irving,” about death and friendship; and two new plays will be coming out this fall from Baker’s Plays of Boston: “The Jesus Trip” and “The Golden Nest.” A Dramatist Guild member.
CHRISTINE RUSCH has been a founding artistic director of a playwrights theatre in Greenville, NC; with the NC Humanities Committee, she created the educational program Human Values in New Works for the Stage; was a founding board member of the NC Writers Network, and is a 2000 Drama Fellow of the SC Academy of Authors. Studies include: John Ford Noonan, Arthur Giron, Bill Hardy, Harvena Richter, M.Ed. Temple Univ. Fellowships/Admin: The VA Center for the Creative Arts, Dorset Colony House, Southern Appalachian Repertory Theatre, Mars Hill, Hambidge Center for the Creative Arts and Sciences, Rabun Gap, The Millay Colony for the Arts, various Artist in Residencies; Playwrights Fund of NC, Best Lunch Theatre Ever, and Southeastern Playwrights Conference. Productions/ Awards: NC Black Repertory, Performance Network, Ensemble Studio Theatre, Actors Theatre of Louisville National Playwrighting Competition (Semifinalist), Works by Women, Southeastern Theatre Conference, Love Creek Short Play Fest, Theatre Works, New Ensemble Actors Theatre, Turnip Theatre Fest, and numerous others. Publications and anthologies include Café La Mama Issue of Lamia Ink! Upcoming production: “Trane: Behind the Blues” (Dallas; Oslo); and “Sarajevo” (Cauchemar Literary Journal). Dramatists Guild and The Authors League member.