Recent MFA grad, Bianca Sams is apart of the 2014-15 New Works Fellowship at Tennessee Rep! This prestigious opportunity is given to 4 playwrights per year and includes development help on a new play, a public reading and workshops with professional theater artists.
Fun fact!(tell all your friendsss) Jeremy Sony(another OU alum) received this fellowship last year!
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.
“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.”
Bianca Sams ’14 will have a reading of her thesis play, RUST ON BONE, JULY 15TH IN New York at the Manhattan Theatre Club. It will be directed by the Goodman Theater’s Chuck Smith, and feature OU alumnus Marissa Wolf, and current OU MFA actor, Thomas Daniels.
Synopsis: Trapped by a stranger in her office, psychologist Dr. Devra Mendoza must use her training to maneuver her way through a game of cat and mouse with life and death consequences. Rust on Bone looks at the personal cost of war, societal stigmas of therapy, and the ripple effects of trauma and mental illness.
You can RSVP by emailing BIANCASAMS (at) BIANCASAMS (dot)COM.
MANHATTAN THEATRE CLUB
STUDIO SPACE #3
311 W. 43 R D STREET
JULY 15, 2014 @ 7:30PM
Bianca Sams (MFA ’14) was named a finalist at the Playwright Foundation “Bay Area Playwrights Festival” for her play BATTLE CRY. There were 20 finalists out of 500 submissions.
From their site: “The Bay Area Playwrights Festival supports the development of six full-length plays annually: five selected from our annual open submission process to reflect the outstanding quality, diversity, and daring for which the Festival is known, and the sixth play a Producing Partnership that offers developmental resources to a play advancing toward production.”
SYNOPSIS: BATTLE CRY is inspired by the life and travails of an unsung hero in the Black Civil Rights Movement named Claudette Colvin. At 15, Claudette refused to give up her seat on a Montgomery bus 9 months prior to Rosa Parks’ arrest. BATTLE CRY tells the personal story of a naïve but passionate 15-year-old girl whose impact on the world has been left out of history books. The play looks at issues of class, ethnicity, and behind the scenes politics in the fight for Civil Rights in America while also highlighting Claudette’s personal courage in the face of injustice.
DEVELOPMENT HISTORY/AWARDS FOR BATTLE CRY:
Ohio University MFA Workshop (3x)
Seabury Quinn Festival of New Plays – Staged Reading
Tides Theater SF as part of DGA Footlights reading Series
Marrietta University Black History Month Event – Staged Reading
Kennedy Center ACTF – Lorraine Hansberry Award (2nd pl) and Rosa Parks Award (2nd pl)
ATHE – Jane Chambers Student Playwright Award (2nd pl)
The Playwright Foundation – Bay Area Playwright Festival (finalist)
OHIO MFA Directing alum, Lee Kinney is seeking short plays by July 4th:
“Piper Theater Productions, a not for profit theater company in Park Slope, is now accepting submissions for their new summer reading series. This series will take place weekly in July at the Old Stone House Park in Brooklyn.
We are looking for short plays (one acts or 10 minute plays) with a musical component that lend themselves to being performed outdoors. Priority will be given to scripts that present a unique relationship both to music and musical performance, as well as nature and the outdoors.
Publicity, performers and a beautiful outdoor performance space will be provided. Sorry, no stipend. Interested? Please submit your piece and a short statement detailing your background and reasons for applying to email@example.com by July 4th.”
Bianca Sams’ play “Rust on Bone” was one of four plays chosen for the Gulfshore Playhouse’s 2nd Annual New Works Festival in Naples, Florida. Sams, OU MFA ’14, will work with actors and director for a week before a staged reading of her play the weekend of the festival, Sept 4-7, 2014.
A public staged reading of SUNDIAL, a new play by MFA alum Jason Half about coal mining and the communities affected by it, will be presented on Friday, June 6, 8:00 p.m and Saturday, June 7 at 8:00 p.m. at Mid-Ohio Valley Players in Marietta, Ohio.
In SUNDIAL, a West Virginia elementary schoolteacher pushes to change the policies of the coal company that are affecting her town. But her position is complicated, as neighbors, friends, and even her family work for – and benefit from – the coal business. Inspired by the events of Marsh Fork Elementary and the mountaintop removal process occurring beside it, the new play explores the relationship and responsibilities between corporation and community.
While an MFA candidate at Ohio University, writer Jason Half received the coveted Trisolini Fellowship to begin research for a play that would explore the subject of coal mining and its effects on Appalachian communities. The MOVP reading will be the play’s first public presentation. “I don’t want this play to take sides,” said Half. “Instead, I hope Sundial makes the audience ask questions about the best way a town can work with a business that has both benefits and risks.” The honesty and quiet passion of the West Virginia characters came alive for Half as they confronted challenges to family, work, and land in the play, he said.
Jason Half is a Marietta-based writer who has taught scriptwriting at Marietta College and through the Colony Theater and the Ohio Arts Council. Recently, his work has received public presentations in Chicago and Pittsburgh. He is the recipient of the 2010 Scott McPherson playwriting award. This is Half’s first full-length script set in the Mid-Ohio Valley. The reading will be performed by veteran actors from the Marietta community. Amanda Anderson, Andy Felt, Mollie Jarrell, Beth Lane, Dyrk Lang, Andrew Pomerleau, and Dawn Weidner perform a variety of roles as parents, miners, teachers, officials, protestors, and supporters in the play.
“I’m excited to bring this story to an audience affected by these issues,” Half said. “It’s a story that will speak to everyone in this area who sees it.”
Public staged reading of SUNDIAL by Jason Hall Mid-Ohio Valley Players, 229 Putnam St., Marietta, Ohio 8:00 p.m. Friday and Saturday, June 6th and 7th
Nguyen was one of eight new writers to join the group of 25 Core Writers. “The Core Writer program brings a diverse range of playwrights to the Center for play development workshops in collaboration with prom is the Co-Artistic Director of the Nguyen is an OBIE Award-winning Vampire Cowboys of NYC. His plays include “She Kills Monsters,” “Soul Samurai,” “Alice in Slasherland,” “The Inexplicable Redemption of Agent G,” and the musicals “Krunk Fu Battle Battle,” “War is F**king Awesome” and “Samantha Rai and the Shogun of Fear.” He is a proud member of The Playwrights’ Center, New Dramatists, Ensemble Studio Theatre and The Ma-Yi Writers Lab. His company, Vampire Cowboys, often considered the pioneers of “Geek Theater,” holds the unique distinction of being the first and only professional theater organization to be sponsored by NY Comic Con.inent directors, actors, dramaturgs and designers. Over the three-year term with the Playwrights’ Center as an artistic home, selected work by Core Writers is showcased in the community through the PlayLabs festival and the Ruth Easton New Play Series.”
Sams, a MFA graduate this year, was one of five playwrights named a Core Apprentice. That program”pairs student playwrights with a mentor and offers play development support.”
Sams is an Actor/Writer/Producer based in New York City. She is a graduate of New York University’s Tisch School, where she earned the distinction of being Tisch’s first ever Triple Major (Acting, Dramatic Writing, Africana Studies). At NYU she studied acting through the Strasberg Film Institute and Royal Academy Dramatic Arts (RADA) London, England. Her writing mentors at NYU included Richard Wesley, Beth Turner, George Malko, John Guerre (Honors), Kenneth Lonergan (Honors) and Daniel Goldfarb. Since graduating her work has been seen at Karamu House, Cleveland Public Theater, Old Vic Theater London and Public Theater in New York. She has performed as an actor at Cleveland Public Theater, Florida Studio Theater, Old Vic London, Public Theater NY, and can be seen on film in Rent directed by Chris Columbus. She is a full member of the Old Vic New Voices Network New York under Artistic Director Kevin Spacey. She has produced several ten minute play festivals in New York and Los Angeles, and is moving into full length off broadway theater. She is recent graudate from the MFA in Playwrighting at Ohio University with Charles Smith. For more information go to www.biancasams.com.
The Playwrights’ Center is “one of the nation’s most generous and well-respected theater organizations, the Playwrights’ Center focuses on both supporting playwrights and promoting new plays to production at theaters across the country. The Center has helped launch the careers of numerous nationally recognized artists, notably August Wilson, Lee Blessing, Suzan-Lori Parks, Jordan Harrison, Carlyle Brown, Craig Lucas, Jeffrey Hatcher, Melanie Marnich, and Kira Obolensky. Work developed through Center programs has been seen nationwide on such stages as the Yale Rep, Woolly Mammoth, Guthrie, Goodman, and many others.”