(BOSTON) – Huntington Theatre Company announces its 2019-2021 cohort of Huntington Playwriting Fellows Kate Cortesi, Catherine Epstein, Fedna Jacquet, and Andrew Siañez-De La O.

The Huntington has fostered local playwrights through the Huntington Playwriting Fellows initiative for 16 years. Whether emerging talents or established professionals, playwrights of all levels and backgrounds are considered. Fellows partake in a two-year residency during which they receive a modest honorarium from the theatre, participate in writers’ collective meetings, attend Huntington productions and events, and benefit from access to the Huntington’s artistic staff and resources. Alumni of the program have access to ongoing developmental opportunities including the Huntington’s Summer Workshops – a two-week new work retreat – and the Breaking Ground Festival of New Work.

Previous Huntington Playwriting Fellows include Eleanor Burgess (The Niceties), Lydia R. Diamond (Smart PeopleStick Fly, Upcoming: The Bluest Eye), Kirsten Greenidge (Luck of the IrishMilk Like Sugar, Upcoming, March 2020: Our Daughters, Like Pillars), Lila Rose Kaplan (Upcoming, January 2020:We All Fall Down), Ryan Landry (Ryan Landry’s “M”), Melinda Lopez (Yerma,Mala, Becoming Cuba, and Sonia Flew), Ronan Noone (The Second Girl, The Atheist, and Brendan), Sinan Ünel (The Cry of the Reed), ( Ken Urban (A Guide for the Homesick), and Rosanna Yamagiwa Alfaro (Before I Leave You). 

The Huntington Playwriting Fellows program is supported by The Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust, the Harry Kondoleon Playwriting Fund, and the Stanford Calderwood Fund for New American Plays.

“Each of these writers – Fedna, Kate, Catherine, and Andrew – have strong voices and unique points of view. We’re thrilled they will join us as part of the ever-expanding cohort of New England-area writers that we have developed relationships with through the Huntington Playwriting Fellows program,” says Huntington Director of New Work Charles Haughland. “Over the next two years, we are excited to get to know their work inside and out, and for the opportunity to have meaningful, ongoing artistic conversations with each of them.”

Kate Cortesi is a Boston and Brooklyn based playwright from Washington DC. Her plays include Love, One More Less, A Patron of the Arts, Great Kills, and Is Edward Snowden Single?Productions/development include Playwrights Horizons, Cherry Lane Theatre, South Coast Rep, Primary Stages, Marin Theatre Company, Keen Theater Co, WP Theater, Colt Coeur, Dorset Theatre Festival, Jackalope, Premiere Stages, The Lark, Center Stage Theater, New Dramatists, and the Ojai Playwrights Conference. Awards and honors: Princess Grace Award, NYFA, Kilroy’s List, Columbia University’s Karen Brownstein Award, and Philip Seymour Hoffman Relentless Award Finalist. Commissions: Playwrights Horizons, South Coast Rep and Keen Theater Company. Kate is a member of New Dramatists.

Catherine Epstein is a writer and teacher based in Boston. Her first play, Mystics, follows the bonds, rivalries, and transformations of three teachers in a faculty lounge over the course of one school year. She is currently working on a new play about an arborist coping with estrangement from her adult daughter. Throughout her work, she is guided by an interest in how we try and often fail to understand each other. She has participated in playwriting workshops and master classes at GrubStreet, the Bard Institute for Writing and Thinking, and the Writers’ Workshop at Exeter. She teaches middle and high school Humanities at Meridian Academy in Jamaica Plain, where she also runs the theatre program.

Fedna Jacquet was born in Boston to Haitian parents. She currently works out of NYC where she is a full time writer and actor. Some of her stage work includes Ain't No Mo at The Public Theater, Gloria, a life at the Daryl Roth Theatre, and many others. TV credits include “New Amsterdam,” “Blacklist,” “Law and Order: SVU,” “Elementary,” and others. Jacquet has written work for the screen and stage. Some of her screenplays include Isaiah, Same Script Different Cast, Kingdom of the Sun, The BreakUp Series plays include Pefeksyon (Perfection), Inheritance(not sure why this weird line space is here)(Talks With My Father), and 72 Hours. Fedna has been awarded a NYSCA/NYFA Artist Fellowship in the category of Playwriting/Screenwriting, was one of three finalists for the 2018 American Black Film Festival/TvOne Screenwriting competition, and is the winner of the 2016 Brienin Bryant Scholarship. She was also a 2018 finalist for both the Playwright's Realm Fellowship and the DVRF Fund. She received her BA at Brown University and her MFA at NYU Tisch School of the Arts.

Andrew Siañez-De La O is a Boston based Mexican-American playwright from El Paso, Texas. He is currently a Scratchpad Playwright with The Playwrights Realm, the 2019 Gish Jen Fellow with the Writers’ Room of Boston, and a scriptwriter for the Latinx children's fiction podcast, "Timestorm." Additionally, his work was recently developed through Milagro Theatre’s Ingenio program, a Latinx New Works Festival. In 2019, he was a PlayLab Writer with Pipeline Theatre Company (NYC) and, in 2018, he was a part of the first cohort of playwrights in the National Young Playwrights in Residence program with Echo Theater Company (LA) and a Playwright Fellow with Company One Theatre (Boston). He graduated from Emerson College with a BFA in Theatre and Performance.

Past Huntington Playwriting Fellows are leaders of the local community whose plays have been produced on the Huntington’s stages and throughout the country. They are:

2017-2019 Cohort:  MJ Halberstadt (The Usual Unusual, Deal Me Out) and Brenda Withers (The Deer and the Antelope,  String Around My Finger)

2015-2017 Cohort: Thom Dunn (How to Build a Universe That Doesn't Fall Apart Two Days LaterFour Wall Prism: An Extraordinary Rendition of Historical Events) and Deborah Salem Smith (Anna K., Faithful Cheaters)

2014-2016 Cohort: Mia Chung (You for Me for You, Catch as Catch Can), John J King (From Denmark with Love, Martha’s (b)Rainstorm: A Boston Fairytale), Sam Marks (Cells, The Department Party), and Nina Louise Morrison (The Vault, Forever Home)

2012-2014 Cohort: Lila Rose Kaplan (We All Fall Down, The Magician’s Daughter), Walt McGough (Non-Player Character, Chalk), and Lenelle Moïse (K-I-S-S-I-N-G, Merit)

2011-2013 Cohort: John Oluwole ADEkoje (Knockaround Kids, [Shoe] Shine Safari), Eleanor Burgess (The Niceties, Sparks Fly Upward), and David Valdes Greenwood (Last Catastrophist, The Mermaid Hour)

2010-2012 Cohort: Rosanna Yamagiwa Alfaro (Before I Leave YouMammal Heat), Miranda Craigwell ADEkoje (Shelter of Last Resort, 36 Days), Lawrence Goodman (Heresy, The Disappearance of the Jews), and Masha Obolensky (Brazen, Not Enough Air)

2009–2011 Cohort: Patrick Gabridge (Drift, Mox Nox), Ryan Landry (Ryan Landry’s “M,” Psyched), and MJ Kaufman (Wolves Eat Elk, Sensitive Guys)

2007–2009 Cohort: Kirsten Greenidge (Our Daughters, Like Pillars; Milk Like Sugar), Jacqui Parker (A Crack in the Blue Wall, Jeanie Don’t Sing No Mo’), Ken Urban (The Remains, A Guide for the Homesick), and Joyce Van Dyke (The Women Who Mapped the Stars , Deported / a dream play)

2005–2007 Cohort:  Lydia R. Diamond (Smart PeopleStick Fly), Rebekah Maggor (translation of Mamduh Adwan’s Hamlet Wakes Up Late, Shakespeare’s Actresses in America), John Shea (A Bad Taste in a Lot of People’s Eyes, Claire Silva), and Kate Snodgrass (Redux, The Glider)

2003–2005 Cohort: John Kuntz (Necessary Monsters, The Hotel Nepenthe), Melinda Lopez (Mala, Yerma)Ronan Noone (The Second GirlThe Smuggler)and Sinan Ünel (Chatal, The Cry of the Reed)



The Huntington Theatre Company is Boston’s leading professional theatre and one of the region’s premier cultural assets since its founding in 1982. Recipient of the 2013 Regional Theatre Tony Award, the Huntington brings together superb local and national talent and produces a mix of groundbreaking new works and classics made current to create award-winning productions. The Huntington 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. The Huntington has long been an anchor cultural institution of Huntington Avenue, the Avenue of the Arts, and will remain so on a permanent basis with plans to convert the Huntington Avenue Theatre into a first-rate, modern venue with expanded services to audiences, artists, and the community. Under the direction of Norma Jean Calderwood Artistic Director Peter DuBois and Managing Director Michael Maso, the Huntington cultivates, celebrates, and champions theatre as an art form. For more information, visit  

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