For the Ohio University Master of Fine Arts playwriting students, there is no “Syllabus Week.” They don’t get out of class early after only having read the professor’s classroom policies. They don’t take a month to groom their first play.
They only have four days.
That’s the lead paragraph from the feature article on our “Madness” show that was published this week in Ohio University’s Independent Student Newspaper,The Post.
Click here for a two-minute news clip with an interview with Charles Smith, the Head of the MFA Playwriting program, and clips for rehearsals and tech.
A link to the online article, with several pictures from rehearsals and tech, written by Meryl Gottlieb can be found here.
The next madness is Friday, September 19th, and is being produced by 2nd year MFA playwright, Aaron Johnson.
Mark Chrisler, Ohio MFA Alum, opened his play, THE ART OF PAINTING, in Chicago this past weekend with his theater company, Found Objects Theatre. It’s running with another one-act, Chris Bower’s Notes to Molly, and the evening is billed as “Painting Molly.”
Three current MFA Playwrights and one recent alumnus are opening 10-4: THE TRUCK STOP PLAYS at CIC Theater in Chicago on Friday, August 8th. The plays run through August 30th.
Ryan Patrick Dolan ’16 enlisted three other playwrights Neal Adelman ’15, Tyler Whidden ’16, and recent grad, Anthony Ellison ’14, to write one-acts to take place at a truck stop. The result is four dark comedies with strong, funny female characters.
The directors are four women from the Chicago theater scene: Karisa Bruin, Jeri Frederickson, Ashley Neal, and Mary O’Connor. Each director cast the plays with Chicago actors.
Recent Ohio University student, Cat Abood (pictured above in red), appears in Anthony Ellison’s play. Ellison coached Abood in Ohio University’s improv group, Black Sheep.
OU Professor Erik Ramsey found this video interview by Atlantic Monthly author Ta-Nehisi Coates. He offers some great advice on writing, and dealing with stress when writing, and finding breakthroughs. (It’s six minutes and worth watching.)
“The Jane Chambers Student Playwriting Award recognizes plays and performance texts created by women that present a feminist perspective and contain significant opportunities for female performers. This competition is open to both graduate and undergraduate students. The Jane Chambers Award for emergent playwrights encourages diversity of style and content. All forms of drama are accepted, including solo performance work. Your play will be recognized at the Women and Theatre Program’s Pre-Conference in Scottsdale, AZ on July 24th and a synopsis and information about your work will be posted to the WTP website.”
Dolan wrote “Moraine” during his first year in the Ohio MFA Playwriting program, and had a reading at the 2014 Seabury Festival at Ohio University in the spring.
MORAINE synopsis: Fighting time and the most brutal Chicago winter in recent memory, Mark attempts to keep his ad-hoc collection of friends from disintegrating in the face of illness, ambition, and betrayal. Moraine is a play about family, brand awareness, and ice cream that’s so goddamn good it’ll make you cry.
The reading features two recent Ohio BFA alumni, Becky Markert and Emily Page Auwaerter. Becky is reprising her role as “Mackenzie.” Emily played the “Nurse” in an earlier classroom reading, and is reading stage directions.