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HUNTINGTON THEATRE COMPANY’S FIFTH ANNUAL SUMMER WORKSHOP INCLUDES NEW PLAYS BY GABRIDGE, KAPLAN & MOÏSE

(BOSTON) – The Huntington Theatre Company’s annual Summer Workshop will start rehearsals on July 12 and conclude in public readings of three new plays on July 23 and 24, 2016. The workshop allows selected members of the Huntington Playwriting Fellows program two weeks to focus on developing new plays. The workshop and public readings will take place in the South End at the Huntington’s Stanford Calderwood Pavilion at the Boston Center for the Arts, 527 Tremont Street, Boston.

  • The Magician’s Daughter by Lila Rose Kaplan, directed by Meredith McDonough
    Public reading: Saturday, July 23  at 3pm
    RSVP: huntingtontheatre.org/magician

**Please note that readings are open to the public, but not to reviewing members of the press. An RSVP is required to attend.

“Now in its fifth year, this annual development retreat is an important cornerstone for our new play activities,” says Artistic Director Peter DuBois. “Boston area playwrights participate in all levels of the process – the original retreat design and the annual selection process. Plays from previous years have gone on to production both by the Huntington and other Boston companies, and I’m excited to see how these three plays evolve this summer.”

Modeled after the Sundance Theatre Lab, the Summer Workshop is an extension of the Huntington’s Playwriting Fellows program and Breaking Ground Festival. Huntington staff members Lisa Timmel (Director of New Work) and Charles Haugland (Artistic Programs & Dramaturgy) support the writers in development. The festival is produced by Stephanie LeBolt, Daniel Morris, and Tonasia Jones.

“Not only are all this year's plays formally venturesome, but each is emotionally engaging in ways we haven't seen from these writers before,” says Director of New Work Lisa Timmel. “Lila Rose, Patrick, and Lenelle are taking bold risks and I am delighted to be able to support them as they hone their craft and expand their voices. Our directors this year come to us from across the country and they are three of the most dynamic women directing today. It's an honor to host Meredith, Jenny, and Marti.”

 

ABOUT THE PLAYS AND PLAYWRIGHTS

THE MAGICIAN’S DAUGHTER
by Lila Rose Kaplan
Directed by Meredith McDonough
Public reading: Saturday, July 23 at 3pm

RSVP: huntingtontheatre.org/magician   

This play is a Magic Show, Heartwarming and somewhat Formally Adventurous. Discretion for Viewers advised due to Potent Matters such as Fantastic Figurative Fathers addicted to alcohol and Dangerous Damsel Daughters about to grow up. Discretion for Viewers advised if you have a Father or a Daughter (or know anyone who does).

Lila Rose Kaplan writes heartfelt comedies, bittersweet dramas, and musicals for young people. Her plays include Home of the Brave, Jesus Girls, The Magician’s Daughter, 1 2 3 - a play about abandonment and ballroom dancing, We All Fall Down, Wildflower, Bureau of Missing Persons, and Biography of a Constellation. Her theatre for young audiences work includes The Light Princess, The Pirate Princess, and The Magic Fish. Ms. Kaplan’s plays have been produced by the American Repertory Theater, South Coast Repertory, Merrimack Repertory Theatre, New Victory Theatre, Second Stage Theatre, San Francisco Playhouse, Neighborhood Productions, Know Theatre, and Perishable Theatre. Her plays have been developed by the Huntington, Arena Stage, The Kennedy Center, Ensemble Studio Theatre, Center Theatre Group, Theatreworks, PlayPenn, and The Lark. She is the recipient of the National Science Award in Playwriting and the International Women's Playwriting Award. Her fellowships include a Huntington Playwriting Fellowship, Playwrights’ Realm Writing Fellow, Old Vic/New Voices Exchange, and the Shank Fellowship. She has held residencies at New Rep Next Voices, Harvard Business School, and the Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics. She has a BA with honors from Brown University and an MFA in Playwriting from UC San Diego. Ms. Kaplan lives in Cambridge with her marine biologist and her curious daughter. lilarose.org.

DRIFT
by Patrick Gabridge
Directed by Marti Lyons
Public Reading: Saturday, July 23 at 6pm

RSVP: huntingtontheatre.org/drift

The lives of very different farming families intertwine after a deadly pesticide accident. As two wives find themselves caught between holding on to what was lost and moving forward, Driftfinds dark poetry in how we relate to the land around us and how we grow food in contemporary America.

Patrick Gabridge’s full-length plays include Lab Rats, Blood on the Snow, Flight, Distant Neighbors, Fire on Earth, and Blinders and have been staged by theatres across the country. Recent commissions include plays and musicals for In Good Company, The Bostonian Society, Central Square Theater, and Tumblehome Learning. His short plays are published by Playscripts, Brooklyn Publishers, Heuer, Smith & Kraus, and YouthPlays and have received more than 1,000 productions from theatres and schools around the world. He’s also the author of three novels, Steering to Freedom, Tornado Siren, and Moving (a life in boxes). His work for radio has been broadcast and produced by NPR, Shoestring Radio Theatre, Playing on Air, and Icebox Radio Theatre. Mr. Gabridge has a habit of starting things: he helped start Boston’s Rhombus Playwrights writers’ group, the Chameleon Stage theatre company in Denver, the Bare Bones Theatre company in New York, the publication Market InSight… for Playwrights, and the on-line Playwrights’ Submission Binge. He’s also a member of the Dramatists Guild, StageSource, and a board member of the Theatre Community Benevolent Fund. He is the co-founder and current coordinator of the New England New Play Alliance. In his spare time, he likes to farm and fix up old houses.

K-I-S-S-I-N-G
by Lenelle Moïse
Directed by Jenny Koons
Public reading: Sunday, July 24 at 2pm

RSVP: huntingtontheatre.org/kissing

When “around-the-way-girl” Lala meets brainy and affluent Dani, an instant flirtation grows into an inseparable season of firsts. Their playful debates about everything from visual art to old school music seem romantic. So why haven’t they started K-I-S-S-I-N-G?

K-I-S-S-I-N-G was commissioned by the Clark University Theatre Department.

Lenelle Moïse is a poet, playwright, and performance artist. She was a 2012-2014 Huntington Theatre Company Playwriting Fellow and the 2010-2011 Poet Laureate of Northampton, Massachusetts. She wrote, composed, and co-starred in the critically acclaimed Off Broadway drama Expatriate. Her other plays include The Many Faces of Nia, Cornered in the Dark, Purple, and Merit which won the 2012 Ruby Prize. Her work has been developed with the Culture Project, the Hansberry Project, Hedgebrook, the Jewish Plays Project, Kitchen Theatre Company, Serious Play Theatre Ensemble, Southern Rep Theatre, New Repertory Theatre, and The New Black Fest at the Lark Play Development Center, among others. Ms. Moïse has also been an artist-in-residence at Clark University, Northwestern, and UT Austin. She is the author of the poetry collection, Haiti Glass (City Lights/Sister Spit), a winner of the 2015 PEN Oakland Josephine Miles Literary Award.

ABOUT THE HUNTINGTON THEATRE COMPANY’S NEW PLAY INITIATIVES AND PLAYWRITING FELLOWS PROGRAM
The Huntington Theatre Company is a national leader in the development of new plays and has produced 120 world, American, or New England premieres. The cornerstone of activity is the Huntington Playwriting Fellows (HPF) program, a two-year fellowship for selected local writers. A three-year, $245,000 grant from the Andrew W. Mellon foundation adds local playwright Melinda Lopez to the Huntington’s full-time staff as playwright-in-residence. The annual two-week Summer Workshop and Breaking Ground Festival of new plays allows selected HPFs and national writers to develop their plays in two and three dimensions.

The Huntington Playwriting Fellows (HPF) program creates relationships between a local community of writers and a nationally prominent producing theatre, forges those bonds through authentic conversation and artistic collaboration, and encourages dialogue between local artists. Huntington productions of plays by HPFs include Stick Fly and Smart People by Lydia R. Diamond, Ryan Landry’s “M” and Psyched by Ryan Landry, Milk Like Sugar and Luck of the Irish by Kirsten Greenidge, Before I Leave You by Rosanna Yamagiwa Alfaro, The Atheist, Brendan, and The Second Girl by Ronan Noone, Sonia Flew and Becoming Cuba by Melinda Lopez, The Cry of the Reed by Sinan Ünel, and Shakespeare’s Actresses in America by Rebekah Maggor.

Since 2003, the HPF program has invited writers to participate in two-year residencies, during which playwrights receive a modest honorarium, join in a biweekly writers’ collective with artistic staff, attend Huntington productions and events, and are eligible for readings and support through the annual Summer Workshop and Breaking Ground festival of new plays. 

The primary focus of the program is creating relationships with writers at all stages of their careers, from emerging talent to established professionals. The program provides a framework for an in-depth, two-year artistic conversation and a long-term professional relationship. The Summer Workshop, which began in 2012, was developed from conversations at convenings with HPFs past and present to solicit ideas about how to improve and expand the program.

Since 2009, the Huntington has instituted an open application process with submissions from any writer primarily based within commuting distance of Boston; applications are currently solicited every 18 months. The theatre selects two to three writers whose terms overlap with adjacent cohorts. 

ABOUT THE HUNTINGTON THEATRE COMPANY

The Tony Award-winning Huntington Theatre Company is Boston’s leading professional theatre company and a cornerstone of Boston’s theatre community. The Huntington helps drive the local economy, enhances education for youth in Boston and across the Commonwealth, and helps build a vibrant, thriving community on the Avenue of the Arts and in the South End. The Huntington Theatre Company draws 200,000 audience members a year to its two venues – the BU Theatre on Huntington Avenue and the Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA in the South End. The Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA was Boston’s first new theatre complex since 1925, and in addition to serving as the Huntington’s home for new plays, it services as an artistic hub for dozens of smaller theatres, performing groups, and community organizations each year.

 

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