Lark's 19th Annual Playwrights' Week Writers Selected
The Lark Play Development Center announced that seven plays-in-development have been chosen for its 19th annual Playwrights' Week, which will take place September 26-29, 2012.
This year's plays and playwrights are THIS IS WITTENBERG by Lauren Gunderson, HUNGER by Anna Moench, HALFWAY, NEBRASKA byBriandaniel Oglesby, TRANQUIL by Andrew Rosendorf, DENNY & LILA byAugust Schulenburg, #NYC by Kyle Warren and SECRET IDENTITY by Chris Weikel.
Playwrights' Week playwrights participate in an intensive seven-day retreat where they focus on self-stated developmental goals with support from their creative teams, peer writers, and Lark's staff. As part of this process, the writers are provided professional actors, a director, and ten hours of rehearsal before presenting their works-in-progress to the public in a rehearsal format. They also participate in events designed to foster a community among their peers and to introduce them to leading dramatists and other industry professionals.
Playwrights Week is supported this year by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs and the Office of New York City Council Speaker Christine Quinn.
Works were selected from over 900 submissions received through the Lark's Open Access Program, and assessed by the Lark's Literary Wing, a team of 51 volunteer theater artists and community members. Each submitted play was evaluated by Literary Wing members, and selected based on a multi-step process including an initial blind review (where scripts were read without the author's name attached); and advanced through a careful assessment of each author's goal statement about how the play would specifically benefit from the Lark's playwright-driven development process. Final selections were made by a core group of LitWing members in consultation with Lark staff, based on Lark support criteria including strength of voice, diversity of perspective, and impact of the program with respect to the author's stated developmental goals.
PLAYS AND PLAYWRIGHTS:
THIS IS WITTENBERG by Lauren Gunderson - Based on the true history of Hamlet's genesis; science and fiction converge when a Nobleman and a Prince end up as grad school roommates.
HUNGER by Anna Moench - In the sandy hills of China's Loess Plateau, a farming couple mourns the death of their only son. Their search for an illegal afterlife bride is complicated by the fact that before his death their son committed an act of horrifying violence, leaving them outcasts in their community.
HALFWAY, NEBRASKA by Briandaniel Oglesby - Sheila must drive her troubled adoptive son, Nate, to Nebraska before the sunset of the Safe Haven law which permits parents to abandon their children at hospitals to become wards of the state.
TRANQUIL by Andrew Rosendorf - An estranged brother returns home years after causing his sister to become paraplegic and is forced to confront his actions as well as his sister's budding sexuality.
DENNY AND LILA by August Schulenburg - Jabber tells us what happens to legendary con artists Denny and Lila when an Alabama con goes wrong.
#NYC by Kyle Warren - As cataclysm looms, six New Yorkers' lives intersect, leading a power-hungry aide, a struggling author and an outspoken journalist to uncover a devastating series of lies.
SECRET IDENTITY by Chris Weikel - A teenager must deal with the constant humiliation of the school bully, his changing ideas of who he is sexually and creatively, and try to balance his relationship between his real-world best friend and the increasingly intrusive fictional characters he's created to help him through the day.
For more information about the Lark Play Development Center, visit: www.larktheatre.org.
Founded in 1994, the LARK PLAY DEVELOPMENT CENTER is a laboratory for new voices and new ideas, providing playwrights and their collaborators with resources to develop their work in a supportive yet rigorous environment and encouraging artists to define their own goals and creative processes in pursuit of a unique vision. We embrace new and diverse perspectives here at home and in all corners of the world, supporting innovative strategies to help new work reach audiences through a network of evolving partnerships. We strive to reinvigorate the theater's ancient and enduring role as a public forum for discussion, debate, and community engagement, and to strengthen society's capacity to imagine its future through storytelling. The Lark is led by its co-founder and Artistic Director John Clinton Eisner and Managing Director Michael Robertson.
Lauren Gunderson – Lauren received her MFA from NYU, her BA from Emory, and is an NYU Reynolds Fellow in Social Entrepreneurship. Her 3-city rolling world premiere of Exit, Pursued By A Bear continues across the country. She has developed/produced work with The O'Neill, South Coast Rep, The Kennedy Center, Marin Theatre, Bay Area Playwrights Festival and more. She has commissioned from South Coast Rep, Crowded Fire, SF Playhouse, and The Kennedy Center. She speaks on the intersection of science and theatre, and writes for The Huffington Post. She is currently developing a series for MTV about science fairs.
Anna Moench – Plays include The PillowBook (59E59), Hunger (Public Theater Reading), In Quietness (EST), and Great Eastern (2009 EST/Sloan Commission). Her other work has been produced at The Flea, the Old Vic, Dixon Place, The Looking Glass Theatre, and FringeNYC. Awards include the Jerome Foundation's 2009 Travel Grant, the 2010 T.S. Eliot Exchange with the Old Vic, the Tennessee Williams Scholarship, the 2011 Tofte Lake Center Residency, and a 2011 EST/Sloan Commission. Anna is a member of the 2011 Emerging Writers Group at The Public, Youngblood at Ensemble Studio Theatre, and is a New Georges Affiliated Artist.
Briandaniel Oglesby – Briandaniel is a Diversity Fellow at University of Texas at Austin's MFA program for Playwriting, the Literary Manager/Dramaturg for Barnyard Theatre in Davis, CA, holds an MFA in Creative Writing (Fiction) from the University of California, Riverside, and was a National Finalist for the Kennedy Center's American College Theatre Festival in D.C.
August Schulenberg – Plays include Carrin Beginning, Rue, Riding the Bull, Good Hope, Other Bodies, Honey Fist, Dark Matter, Jacob's House, Deinde, Dream Walker, Denny and Lila, The Hand That Moves and The Lesser Seductions of History. His plays have been produced and developed at the Lark Play Development Center, Bay Area Playwrights Festival, Portland Stage Company, Dayton Playhouse, Colonial Players, Abingdon Theater Company, Gideon Productions, New Amerikan Theatre, Penobscot Theatre, Decades Out, Reverie Productions, Wolf 359, Adaptive Arts, Nosedive Productions, and Flux Theatre Ensemble, where he is the Artistic Director. His work has also been published in the "New York Theater Review,""Stage and Screen," "Indie Theater Now," "Midway Journal," and in two upcoming issues of "Carrier Pigeon."
Andrew Rosendorf – Andrew has spent the past three years as the Playwright-in-Residence at Florida Stage. His plays include Cane (Florida Stage), Good Night & God Bless, or The Lone Ranger Rides Again (2011 O'Neill Conference Semi-Finalist), Brilliant Corners (NNPN National Showcase of New Plays), The Kid (Weissberger Nominee), and Orlah (Heideman Award Finalist). He has been a finalist for the Jerome Fellowship at The Playwrights' Center. Andrew holds a BA in Theatre from the College of William and Mary and an MFA in Playwriting from The New School for Drama. He is a proud member of the Dramatists Guild.
Kyle Warren – Kyle is a New York City based writer of theatre and film. His plays include Room For Appeals (Ugly Rhino, NY), In the Static, or Listening With Rabbit Ears (Mixtape Theatre, LA), Divine Intervention (Reading: Chicago Dramatists), and Cephalopod (NY International Fringe Festival). He has been a regular contributor of humor and criticism to the on-line magazine Echo-Boomer.com and is currently in production as writer and director for a new web comedy series,Meet Norma St. Cleod. Kyle is a graduate of Northwestern University's Creative Writing for the Media Program and works as assistant to Tony Kushner.
Chris Weikel – Chris is currently in the MFA playwriting program at Hunter College studying under Tina Howe and Mark Bly, and was a 2008-09 Dramatist Guild Fellow. He is the 2007 recipient of the Robert Chesley Award and the 2008 recipient of the Irv Zarkower Award. His Penny Penniworth was recently produced Off-Broadway by Emerging Artists Theatre Company (EAT). His Pig Tale: An Urban Faerie Story was produced in New York as well as at the Absolut Dublin International Gay Theatre Festival, and he was commissioned by American Stage Company to write an adaptation of A Child's Christmas in Wales for the company's 2000 season.