Susan Smith Blackburn Prize Announces 35th Anniversary Global Celebration

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Susan Smith Blackburn Prize Announces 35th Anniversary Global Celebration

In celebration of its 35th anniversary landmark year, The Susan Smith Blackburn Prize has announced a global celebration where theatres across the English-speaking world will produce 75 plays by past winners and finalists.

The Susan Smith Blackburn Prize was co-founded by Emilie S. Kilgore, Susan's sister and William Blackburn, her husband. It is awarded annually to recognize women from around the world who have written works of outstanding quality for the English-speaking theatre.

When the Prize was established in 1978 only 6% of new plays produced, on both sides of the Atlantic, were written by women. That number is now 20%. Mindful of the fact that women are achieving parity with men in every aspect of theatre except in numbers of productions, to mark its 35th anniversary, the Board of the Prize envisioned a global celebration of productions.

The Board asked its "source theatres" who have been so instrumental in creating the Prize's legacy, to consider producing a play by one of the playwrights honored by The Susan Smith Blackburn Prize during this anniversary year. The response has been overwhelming. To date, over 75 productions by Blackburn Winners and Finalists are programmed during the 35th Anniversary Year, on both sides of the Atlantic.

In Houston alone, (where Susan grew up and first became involved in theatre), The Alley Theatre, Stages Repertory Theatre, Main Street Theater, Stark Naked Theatre, The Ensemble Theatre, Musiqa, Theatre Southwest, The University of Houston and Sam Houston State University are all producing plays for this global initiative.

The 35th Awards Presentation Ceremony will be held in Houston at the Alley Theatre in late February/ early March, 2013. The preceding day, the Prize will host a Special Event, involving Finalists for our Anniversary year, and readings from their plays presented by a creative coalition of Houston theatres. This will be followed by a panel discussion, Women Writing Today, featuring the playwrights who fly in for the occasion. Susan Smith Blackburn Prize Board member, and distinguished interNational Theatre critic, Matt Wolf, will lead the panel.

Every year, The Susan Smith Blackburn Prize Winner is awarded $20,000, and also receives a signed and numbered print by Willem De Kooning, created especially for the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize. Each of the additional Finalists receives $1,000. The winner is chosen from the finalists each year by six Judges, three in the United States, and three in Britain. The list of past judges reads like a veritable who's who of English Speaking theatre over the last 35 years.

Last year The Prize was awarded to U.S. playwright and Texas native Jennifer Haley for her play The Nether, nominated by the Center Theatre Group in Los Angeles. This year's Finalists will be announced in January.

The Susan Smith Blackburn Prize received the 2010 Theatre Communications Group's National Funder Award. The annual honor goes to a company, foundation or other entity for “leadership and sustained national support of theater in America.”

CHRONOLOGICAL LIST OF Susan Smith BLACKBURN PRIZE
35TH ANNIVERSARY PRODUCTIONS:

CURRENT & UPCOMING ANNIVERSARY PRODUCTIONS

Sep 4 - Nov 18, 2012
AN ENEMY OF THE PEOPLE by Henrik Ibsen (new version by Rebecca Lenkiewicz)
Manhattan Theatre Club - New York, NY

Oct 6 - Dec16, 2012
THEATRE IN THE DARK
BEEP by Sheila Callaghan & STRANGERS IN THE PRE-SHOW by Ann Noble
The Odyssey Theatre - Los Angeles, CA

Oct 25 - Nov 10, 2012
BODY AWARENESS by Annie Baker / Stark Naked Theatre Company - Houston, TX

Oct 25 - Nov 25, 2012
SEMINAR by Theresa Rebeck / The Phoenix Theatre - Phoenix, AZ

Oct 26 - Nov 4, 2012
THE OLDEST PROFESSION by Paula Vogel / Theatre Southwest- Houston, TX
WIT by Margaret Edson / American Stage Theatre Company - St. Petersburg, FL

Oct 26 - Dec 2, 2012
GIANT by Sybille Pearson / The Public Theatre - New York, NY

November 2012
THERE ARE MOUNTAINS (Premiere) by Chloe Moss,
Commissioned by Clean Break, London, UK

Nov 6, 2012
LIGHT & SHADOW - six new short plays. Playwrights include Rebecca Lenkiewicz, Dael Orlandersmith, Lizzie Nunnery.
Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester, U.K. in collaboration with Wilma Theater, Philadelphia, PA

Nov 4 - 22, 2012
VIBRANT 2012: Festival of Finbourough Playwrights including Joy Wilkinson & Alexandra Wood
Finborough Theatre, London, U.K.

Nov 6, 2012 - Feb 23, 2013
THE EFFECT by Lucy Prebble (World Premiere) Headlong Theatre at National Theatre, London

Nov 15, 2012
MURDER BALLAD by Julia Jordan and Juliana Nash (World Premiere)
Manhattan Theatre Club - New York, NY

Nov 19 - Dec 30, 2012
WHAT RHYMES WITH AMERICA by Melissa James Gibson (World Premiere)
Atlantic Theater Company - New York, NY

Nov 23, 2012 - Jan 6, 2013
PULLMAN PORTER BLUES by Cheryl L. West / Arena Stage - Washington, D.C.

Nov 30 - Dec 22, 2012
DEAR ELIZABETH by Sarah Ruhl (World Premiere) / Yale Repertory Theatre - New Haven, CT

Dec 28, 2012 - Feb 3, 2013
THIS IS WAR (Premiere) by Hannah Moskovitch
OTHER PEOPLE’S CHILDREN (Premiere) / LITTLE ONE by Hannah Moskovitch
Tarragon Theatre - Toronto, Canada

Jan 11- Feb 3, 2013
THE MOUNTAINTOP by Katori Hall / The Alley Theatre - Houston, TX

Jan 18 - Feb 10, 2013
THE MOUNTAINTOP by Katori Hall / Philadelphia Theatre Company - Philadelphia, PA

Jan 25 - Feb 16, 2013
STONES IN HIS POCKETS by Marie Jones / Yale Repertory Theatre - New Haven, CT

Feb - Mar, 2013
THE FLICK by Annie Baker / Playwrights Horizons - New York, NY

Feb - Apr, 2013
SLEEP ROCK IN THY BRAIN -trilogy with works by Rinne Groff & Anne Washburn
Actors Theatre of Louisville, 2013 Humana Festival of New American Plays

Feb 3 - Mar 4, 2012
CIRCLE MIRROR TRANSFORMATION by Annie Baker / Seattle Repertory Theatre - Seattle, WA

Feb 6 - Mar 3, 2013
THE LANGUAGE ARCHIVE by Julia Cho / Stages Repertory Theatre - Houston, TX

Feb 9 - Mar 10, 2013
LEVELING UP by Deborah Zoe Laufer (World Premiere)Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park - Cincinnati, OH

Mar 2 - Mar 31, 2013
THE MOUNTAINTOP by Katori Hall / San Diego Repertory - San Diego, CA

Mar 6 - Mar 31, 2013
THE MOUNTAINTOP by Katori Hall / TheatreWorks Silicon Valley - Palo Alto, CA

Mar 8 - Apr 14, 2013
STONES IN HIS POCKETS by Marie Jones / Northlight Theatre Company - Skokie, IL

Mar 12 - Apr 7, 2013
RICH GIRL by Victoria Stewart (World Premiere) / George Street Playhouse & Cleveland Play House - New Brunswick, NJ

Mar 15 - Apr 7, 2013
SEMINAR by Theresa Rebeck / Philadelphia Theatre Company - Philadelphia, PA

Mar 19 - April 14, 2013
THE NETHER by Jennifer Haley (World Premiere) / Center Theatre Group - Los Angeles, CA

Mar 21 - Apr 14, 2013
DISCONNECT by Anupama Chandrasekhar / San Jose Repertory Theatre - San Jose, CA

Mar 23 - Apr 28, 2013
THE BOOK CLUB PLAY by Karen Zacarias / Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park - Cincinnati, OH

Mar 29 - May 12, 2013
THE MOUNTAINTOP by Katori Hall / Arena Stage - Washington, D.C.

Apr 2 - Apr 28, 2013
CRIMES OF THE HEART by Beth Henley / Signature Theatre - Arlington, VA

Apr 3 - Apr 6, 2013
DYING FOR IT by Moira Buffini / Sam Houston State University - Huntsville, TX

Apr 3 - Apr 28, 2013
DOLLHOUSE by Rebecca Gilman / Stages Repertory Theatre - Houston, TX

Apr 6, 2013
WORD PLAY by Jennifer Haley / Musiqa - Houston, TX

Apr 19 - May 12, 2013
RICH GIRL by Victoria Stewart (World Premiere)
Cleveland Play House & George Street Playhouse - Cleveland, OH

Apr 25 - May 25, 2013
ENRON by Lucy Prebble / Theatre Three - Dallas, TX

Apr 25 - Jun 2, 2013
THE MOUNTAINTOP by Katori Hall / Performance Network - Ann Arbor, MI

May - Jun, 2013
SOMEWHERE FUN by Jenny Schwartz / Vineyard Theatre - New York, NY

May 10 - Jun 9, 2013
IN THE NEXT ROOM, OR THE VIBRATOR PLAY by Sarah Ruhl /Theatre Royal Bath, Ustinov-Bath, U.K.

May 23 – Jun 16, 2013
CLOSE UP SPACE by Molly Smith Metzler / Main Street Theater - Houston, TX

May 24 - Jun 22, 2013
RAPTURE, BLISTER, BURN by Gina Gionfriddo / Huntington Theatre - Boston, MA

May 24 - Jul 7, 2013
DEAR ELIZABETH by Sarah Ruhl / Berkeley Repertory Theatre - Berkeley, CA

May 31 - Jun 30, 2013
SEVEN HOMELESS MAMMOTHS WANDER NEW ENGLAND by Madeleine George
American Stage Theatre Company - Petersburg, FL

Jun 20 - Jul 28, 2013
BECKY SHAW by Gina Gionfriddo / Performance Network - Ann Arbor, MI

RECENTLY PRODUCED ANNIVERSARY PRODUCTIONS

May 8 - Jul 14, 2012
DETROIT by Lisa D’Amour
National Theatre - London, U.K.

May 28 - Jul 1, 2012
Mr. Burns, A POST-ELECTRIC PLAY by Anne Washburn
Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company - Washington, D.C.

July 2 - Nov 3, 2012
THE LIQUID PLAIN by Naomi Wallace
Oregon Shakespeare Festival - Ashland, OR

July 6 - Jul 29, 2012
GIDION’S KNOT by Johnna Adams
Contemporary American Theater Festival - Sheperdstown, WV

Aug 2 - Aug 26, 2012
CIRCLE MIRROR TRANSFORMATION by Annie Baker
Marin Theatre Company - Mill Valley, CA

Aug 16 - Nov 3, 2012
JUMPY by April De Angelis
Royal Court Theatre and Duke of York’s - London, U.K.

Aug 24 - Oct 7, 2012
DETROIT by Lisa D’Amour
Playwrights Horizons - New York, NY

Aug 25 - Sept 23, 2012
BODY AWARENESS by Annie Baker
Theatre J - Washington, D.C.

Sept 3 - Nov 24 touring the U.K.
Jan 30 - March 9 at the St. James Theatre
OUR COUNTRY’S GOOD by Timberlake Wertenbaker
Out of Joint, London, U.K.

Sept 4 - 29
LIFE FOR BEGINNERS by Alice Birch, Lizzie Nunnery, Ben Ellis, Matt Hartley and Rex Obano
Theatre 503- London, U.K.

Sept 5 - Sept 30, 2012
WHAT I LEARNED IN PARIS by Pearl Cleage (World Premiere)
ALLIANCE THEATRE - Atlanta, GA

Sep 20 - Oct 6, 2012
THE ASTRONAUT’S CHAIR by Rona Munro
Theatre Royal Plymouth at Drum Theatre - Plymouth, U.K.

Sep 22 - Oct 21, 2012
THE NACIREMA SOCIETY by Pearl Cleage
Ensemble Theatre - Houston, TX

Sep 22 - Oct 21, 2012
TOPDOG/UNDERDOG by Suzan-Lori Parks
Marin Theatre Company - Mill Valley, CA

Sep 23 - Oct 14, 2012
EURYDICE by Sarah Ruhl
South Coast Repertory - Costa Mesa, CA

Sep 25 - Oct 21, 2012
THE SISTERS ROSENSWEIG by Wendy Wasserstein
Portland Stage - Portland, ME

Sept 26 - Nov 4, 2012
THE MOUNTAINTOP by Katori Hall
Milwaukee Repertory Theatre - Milwaukee, WI

Sep 27 - Oct 28, 2012
PULLMAN PORTER BLUES World Premiere by Cheryl L. West
Seattle Repertory Theatre - Seattle, WA

Sep 28 - Oct 7, 2012
SERIOUS MONEY by Caryl Churchill
University of Houston - Houston, TX

Oct 9 - Oct 27, 2012
INTIMATE APPAREL by Lynn Nottage
Alberta Theatre Projects - Calgary, Alberta, Canada

Oct 10 - Oct 13, 2012
ENRON by Lucy Prebble
Sam Houston State University, Huntsville, TX

Sept 26 - Nov 4, 2012
THE MOUNTAINTOP by Katori Hall
Milwaukee Repertory Theatre - Milwaukee, WI

Sep 27 - Oct 28, 2012
PULLMAN PORTER BLUES World Premiere by Cheryl L. West
Seattle Repertory Theatre - Seattle, WA

Sep 28 - Oct 7, 2012
SERIOUS MONEY by Caryl Churchill
University of Houston - Houston, TX

October 12-18, 2012
HABITAT by Judith Thompson
Smith College - Northampton, MA

Oct 6 - Dec16, 2012
THEATRE IN THE DARK / BEEP by Sheila Callaghan & STRANGERS IN THE PRE-SHOW by Ann Noble
The Odyssey Theatre - Los Angeles, CA

Oct 9 - Oct 27, 2012
INTIMATE APPAREL by Lynn Nottage / Alberta Theatre Projects - Calgary, Alberta, Canada

Oct 10 - Oct 13, 2012
ENRON by Lucy Prebble / Sam Houston State University, Huntsville, TX

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