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THE HUNTINGTON CONTINUES NEW PLAY DEVELOPMENT INITIATIVES WITH THE 2016 BREAKING GROUND FESTIVAL TO RUN APRIL 14 – 17

(BOSTON) — The Huntington Theatre Company’s 2016 Breaking Ground festival of new plays will be held April 14 – 17 at the Huntington’s home for new work, the Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA. The festival is a vital part of the Huntington’s new play development efforts and highlights the work of locally-based Huntington Playwriting Fellows and national writers in partnership with the Huntington. Over the last decade, Breaking Ground plays have gone on to appear at the Huntington as well as theatres in Boston, across the country, and internationally. 

Readings are free and open to the public, though not to reviewing members of the press. Advance reservation is required. RSVP at huntingtontheatre.org/breakingground.

The four-day festival will include:

  • The Wolves by Sarah DeLappe, directed by Morgan Green
    Thursday, April 14 at 7:30pm; South End / Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA
  • Forever Home by Huntington Playwriting Fellow Nina Louise Morrison, directed by Portia Krieger
    Friday, April 15 at 7:30pm; South End / Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA
  • This Exquisite Corpse by Huntington Playwriting Fellow Mia Chung, directed by Ken Rus Schmoll
    Saturday, April 16 at 7:30pm; South End / Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA
  • Blueshift by Huntington Playwriting Fellow John J King, directed by Elena Heyman
    Sunday, April 17 at 7:30pm; South End / Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA

“This year's Breaking Ground represents what is best about our new play development programs – the time, space and support to grow as artists,” says Director of New Work Lisa Timmel. “Our Huntington Playwriting Fellows are presenting work that is challenging, vulnerable, and high caliber. I'm so proud of John J King, Nina Louise Morrison, and Mia Chung for their intense artistic ambitions. We are also thrilled to welcome Sarah DeLappe to the Huntington community. We will be presenting her play The Wolves, which is a Susan Smith Blackburn Prize finalist and a winner of the Relentless Award.”  

MORE ABOUT THE PLAYS AND PLAYWRIGHTS

THE WOLVES
by Sarah DeLappe
Directed by Morgan Green

Thursday, April 14 at 7:30pm
South End / Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA
RSVP at huntingtontheatre.org/breakingground

Left quad. Right quad. Lunge. In perfect sync, a girls indoor soccer team warms up. Over the course of five games, they debate: tampons or pads? Is Coach hungover or just plain lazy? And what in the world can we do about the Khmer Rouge? A portrait of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness for nine American girls who just want to score some goals.

Sarah DeLappe’s play The Wolves (Clubbed Thumb/Playwrights Horizons Theater School, Great Plains Theatre Conference) was a recipient of the American Playwriting Foundation’s inaugural Relentless Award and was a Susan Smith Blackburn Prize finalist. She has been a resident artist at Sitka Fellows Program and at SPACE on Ryder Farm. She is an alumna of Clubbed Thumb Early Career Writers Group, and she is currently a member of Ars Nova Play Group and the New Georges Audrey Residency. She is in the process of earning an MFA from Brooklyn College. 

FOREVER HOME
by Huntington Playwriting Fellow Nina Louise Morrison
Directed by Portia Krieger

Friday, April 15 at 7:30pm
South End / Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA
RSVP at huntingtontheatre.org/breakingground

When Ror comes home to help her father bury his best friend, she discovers he is facing the threat of even bigger losses than she realized. As her father’s world falls into deeper and deeper disarray, Ror must salvage what she can from her past before it’s gone. Forever Home examines how we deal with great change, how we falter, and how to not let what's broken break you.

Nina Louise Morrison is a playwright, director, and teacher with an MFA from Columbia University. She is a Huntington Theatre Company Playwriting Fellow, winner of the 2016 Boston Project at SpeakEasy Stage Company, a PlayLab Affiliate at Company One Theatre, a core member of the devising company Project: Project, and a member of Rhombus writers group. She was a semi-finalist for the 2014 National Playwrights Conference and a recipient of a Richard Rodgers Fellowship and a Shubert Foundation grant. Her plays have also been developed and produced by Fresh Ink Theatre, 20% Theatre Company, Kitchen Theatre Company, Saltbox Theatre Collective, Open Theatre Project, Our Voices, WOW Café, SLAM Boston, Wax Wings Productions, Bostonia Bohemia, and the Boston One-Minute Play Festival. Before moving to Boston, Ms. Morrison was the senior program associate at the Philadelphia Theatre Initiative. She also trained as an actor at the National Theatre Institute at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center, the New Actors Workshop, and received her BA from Oberlin College. She currently teaches playwriting at Grub Street and the University of New Hampshire.

THIS EXQUISITE CORPSE
by Huntington Playwriting Fellow Mia Chung
Directed by Ken Rus Schmoll

Saturday, April 16 at 7:30pm
South End / Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA
RSVP at huntingtontheatre.org/breakingground

This Exquisite Corpse pieces together the puzzle of Jungja and her country in the aftermath of the Korean War. She works to rebuild her life and make friends — as well as learn English — but finds herself literally split into pieces. A surreal “chorus” of Jungjas struggle to express themselves through layers of misinterpretation and cultural appropriation.

Mia Chung is the author of You for Me for You, Catch as Catch Can, and Skin in the GameYou for Me for You premiered at Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company (in association with Ma-Yi Theatre Company, supported by the National Endowment for the Arts), has been produced by Company One Theatre, Portland Playhouse, and Mu Performing Arts/Guthrie Theater, and had its UK premiere at The Royal Court Theatre in London. Ms. Chung’s work has been supported by awards, fellowships, and workshops, including the Bay Area Playwrights Festival, Civilians’ R&D Group, Hedgebrook Women Playwrights Festival, Icicle Creek Theatre Festival, Inkwell, LAByrinth, Playwrights Realm, RISCA, Southern Rep, the Stella Adler Studio, and TCG. She is a member of New Dramatists, a Huntington Playwriting Fellow, and an emeritus member of the Ma-Yi Writers Lab.

BLUESHIFT
by Huntington Playwriting Fellow John J King
Directed by Elena Heyman

Sunday, April 17 at 7:30pm
South End / Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA
RSVP at huntingtontheatre.org/breakingground

Damon bought a house, and Martha is moving in with him. But she has trouble finding a room of her own in the new place. Meanwhile the house has spiders, raccoons, sad paint, and a neighbor who seems a bit too excited that a mixed-race couple has moved in. Turns out this may not be the best place for Martha to fight off her past demons. And speaking of demons: what is that coming out of the trunk in the attic?

John J King is part Texan and part Tyrannosaur and lives in Boston where he makes plays. He has a BA in theatre and English from SUNY Boondocks and an accent from his mama. His plays include From Denmark with Love (IRNE Award nomination for Best New Play), Bear Patrol, and an adapted libretto for the German gothic opera Der Vampyr. His work has been produced in Boston by Vaquero Playground, OperaHub, SpeakEasy Stage Company, and Company One Theatre. He is a proud member of the 2014 – 2016 cohort of the Huntington Playwriting Fellows.

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. The cornerstone of activity is the Huntington Playwriting Fellows (HPF) program, a two-year fellowship for selected local writers. A two-time $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 for six years, from 2013 - 2019. 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. At the end of the 2015-2016 Season, the Huntington will have produced 120 world, American, or New England premieres.

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 Huntington Playwriting Fellows include Milk Like Sugar and Luck of the Irish by Kirsten Greenidge; The Atheist, Brendan, and The Second Girl by Ronan Noone; Stick Fly and Smart People by Lydia R. Diamond; Sonia Flew and Becoming Cuba by Melinda Lopez; Ryan Landry’s “M” and Psyched by Ryan Landry; Before I Leave You by Rosanna Yamagiwa Alfaro; 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 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’s, which began in 2012, were developed from conversations at convenings with Fellows past and present to solicit ideas about how to improve and expand the program.

In 2009, the Huntington instituted an open application process with submissions solicited each spring from any writer primarily based within commuting distance of Boston. The theatre selects two to three writers whose terms overlap with adjacent cohorts.

ABOUT THE HUNTINGTON THEATRE COMPANY

Recipient of the 2013 Regional Theatre Tony Award and named Best of Boston 2013 and 2014 by Boston magazine, the Huntington Theatre Company is Boston’s leading professional theatre and one of the region’s premier cultural assets since its founding in 1982. Bringing together superb local and national talent, the Huntington produces a mix of groundbreaking new works and classics made current to create award-winning productions, runs nationally renowned programs in education and new play development, and serves the local theatre community through its operation of the Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA. Under the direction of Artistic Director Peter DuBois and Managing Director Michael Maso and in residence at Boston University, the Huntington cultivates, celebrates, and champions theatre as an art form. For more information, visit huntingtontheatre.org

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