The Lark Play Development Center Names Playwrights¬' Workshop Fellows
The five fellows are Stefanie Zadravec, winner of the 2009 Helen Hayes Award for her play Honey Brown Eyes, Chisa Hutchinson, who received the GLAAD Award for her play She Like Girls and the 2010 Lilly Award for Outstanding Emerging Playwright, Kimber Lee, a recent arrival from Austin where she earned an MFA in Playwriting at the University of Texas, Rajiv Joseph, award-winning author ofBengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo, Gruesome Playground Injuries, and Animals Out of Paper, and Dominique Morisseau, who is part of Playwrights' Workshop as part of being the 2012-13 PoNY Fellow, supported by Lark in partnership with Playwrights of New York; her play Detroit '67, part of a trilogy about racial tension in Detroit, will be produced at The Public Theater this February.
The Playwrights' Workshop, now it its 14th year, is one of the Lark's longest-running programs, bringing emerging and established playwrights together to explore new material without commercial pressures. Led by esteemed dramatistArthur Kopit, the program's creator, and a group of leading American Playwrights that include David Henry Hwang, Tina Howe, Lynn Nottage, and Theresa Rebeck, among others. Fellows meet twice monthly to share new pages from plays-in-progress with a community of actors, directors, designers, writers and other stakeholders. Fellows are selected annually by a committee that solicits nominations from leading dramatists and artistic directors. Program alumni includeJosé Rivera (School of the Americas), Thomas Bradshaw (Burning, Mary),Samuel D. Hunter (A Bright New Boise), Katori Hall (The Mountaintop, Hurt Village), Lisa Kron (The Verizon Play) and Sarah Ruhl (The Clean House).
A. Rey Pamatmat (Edith Can Shoot Things and Hit Them), a Fellow in the program last year, as part of his PoNY Fellowship, and the recipient of the 2012-13 Hodder Fellowship in Playwriting at Princeton University, described the importance of the program in this way: "To be honest, I was dreading the Workshop at first, because I don't usually show work that's that fresh to people, certainly not to actors, certainly not with directors, artistic staff, and other folks in the room. But everyone in the Workshop is so open to taking a look at what you're trying out and so willing to provide opinions AND to let you argue against or dismiss them that I valued every session in the end. You really do understand from the Workshop that everyone at The Lark - not just the staff - is there to make your play, your writing, and your art better."
Lark Artistic Director John Clinton Eisner remarked, "Putting writers who have more production experience in the room with artists new to the scene allows them to experience fresh ideas, demonstrate new approaches, and break boundaries, while less established writers benefit from being in the room with those who have more experience in the field."
For more information about the Lark Play Development Center, please visit us at our website: www.larktheatre.org.
Chisa Hutchinson (BA, Vassar College; MFA, NYU Tisch School of the Arts) has written a bunch of plays including Alondra Was Here, Dirt Rich, Mama's Gonna Buy You, Sex on Sunday, She Like Girls, Somebody's Daughter, The Subject, This Is Not the Play and Tunde's Trumpet, some of which have even been produced. Companies crazy enough to present her work include the Lark Play Development Center, Working Man's Clothes at the (old) Ohio Theater, the BE Company at Urban Stages, Atlantic Theater Company, Mad Dog Theater Company, Victory Gardens, Partial Comfort Productions and SummerStage. She has been a Dramatists Guild Fellow, an artist-in-residence at the William Inge Center for the Arts, and a New York Neo-Furturist ensemble member. The recipient of numerous honors, she was most notably awarded a Lilly and GLAAD Award for her play She Like Girls. Most recently, she was selected as a finalist for the highly coveted PONY Fellowship, and her play This is Not the Play, was nominated for a 2012 New York Innovative Theatre Award. Chisa currently writes for the Blue Man Group, for which she cannot believe she actually gets paid. To learn more about what all else Chisa's up to, visit www.chisahutchinson.com.
Rajiv Joseph's play,Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo, a 2010 finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, played on Broadway last year, starring Robin Williams. His other plays include Gruesome Playground Injuries, Animals Out of Paper, The Monster at the Door, The North Pool, The Leopard and the Fox (adaptation), All This Intimacyand Huck & Holden. Rajiv has been awarded a United States Artists Grant and the Whiting Award. He has written for the Showtime award-winning series, "Nurse Jackie." He received his B.A. in Creative Writing from Miami University and his M.F.A. in Playwriting from NYU's Tisch School of the Arts. He served for three years in the Peace Corps in Senegal, West Africa.
Kimber Lee received her MFA from the University of Texas at Austin Playwriting Program in May of 2011. Plays include fight, different words for the same thing,Home, and golden hour, and her work has been produced and developed by the Hedgebrook Women Playwrights Festival (2012), the Dramatists Guild Fellows Program (2011-2012), Represent Playwrights Festival at ACT Theatre/Seattle (2012), The Playwrights' Center in Minneapolis (Core Apprentice 2010-2011), Theatre of the 1st Amendment/First Light Discovery Program (2011), Great Plains Theatre Conference (2010, Mainstage Playwright), Theatre Masters National MFA Playwriting Competition (2009), Southern Rep (2011 Ruby Prize Finalist Reading), UT Austin Theatre & Dance (2010 Mainstage), Live Girls Theatre (2010), and Mo'olelo Performing Arts Company (2007). Her play fight received the 2010 Holland New Voices Award. Kimber has been a two-time Finalist for the Bay Area Playwrights' Festival (2010, 2012), a Finalist for the 2010 O'Neill National Playwrights Conference, the 2011 Ruby Prize, the 2012 Seven Devils Playwrights Conference, and the 2013 PoNY Fellowship at the Lark Play Development Center. Recently, she was invited to join the the Ma-Yi Writers Lab. She is currently based in Brooklyn, NY.
Dominique Morisseau, writer and actress, is a recent alumni of the 2011 Public Theater Emerging Writers Group, the Women's Project Playwrights Lab, and the Lark Playwrights Workshop. Her play, Detroit '67, will receive a world premiere in the 2012-2013 season of The Public Theater, which will be presented in association with the Classical Theatre of Harlem. In September 2012, her play Sunset Babywill have its world premiere at the Gate Theater in London, UK. Dominique's inaugural play, Follow Me To Nellie's, was developed at the 2010 O'Neill National Playwrights Conference and produced at Premiere Stages in July 2011. Her produced one-acts include: Third Grade (FTT Festival), Black at Michigan (Cherry Lane Studio/DUTF), Socks, Roses Are Played Out and Love and Nappiness(Center Stage, ATH). Dominique's commissions include: love.lies.liberation (The New Group), Bumrush (Hip Hop Theater Festival) and The Masterpiece(Harlem9/HSA). Dominique is currently developing a 3-play cycle on her hometown of Detroit, entitled The Detroit Projects.The first play in the series, Detroit '67, was developed at The Public Theater and was a finalist for the 2011 O'Neill National Playwrights Conference. The second play in the series, Paradise Blue, was developed June 2011 at the Voice and Vision Retreat, the Hansberry Project at ACT in Seattle, and at Dartmouth with New York Theatre Workshop. Her work has also been published in NY Times bestseller- "Chicken Soup for the African American Sou.l" Dominique is a Jane Chambers Playwriting Award Honoree, a two-time NAACP Image Award recipient, a runner-up for the 2011 Princess Grace Award, a recipient of the Elizabeth George commission from South Coast Rep, a commendation from the Primus Prize by the American Theatre Critics Association, and the winner of the 2012 Barrie and Bernice Stavis Playrwright Award by National Theatre Conference. Dominique is also the 2012 PoNY (Playwrights of New York) Fellow.
Stefanie Zadravec is a resident playwright at New Dramatists. Her plays include:Honey Brown Eyes (Theater J; Working Theater; Helen Hayes Award for Outstanding New Play) The Electric Baby (Quantum Theatre; Women in Arts and Media Award), and Save Me (Baltimore Playwrights Festival Outstanding New Play Award; Phoenix Theatre's National Playwriting Award). Stefanie's collaborations include: We Play for the Gods (The Women's Project), The Fear Project (The Barrow Group), and The Jackson Heights Trilogy (Theater 167). Stefanie has received commissions from Oregon Shakespeare Festival/Full Stage USA, The Working Theater/NYSCA and Epic Theatre Ensemble/Ford Foundation. Fellowships and residencies include Playwrights Realm, The Dramatists Guild, The Women's Project Lab, PlayPenn and Sewanee Writers Conference. Upcoming: The Electric Baby at Two River Theater Company in New Jersey and Rivendell Theatre Ensemble in Chicago. www.szadravec.com.