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Charlayne Woodard, Jimmy Smits, Ben Feldman & More to Take Part in Ojai Playwrights Conference Benefit Gala

Featured playwrights include Danai Gurira, Lisa Kron, Jiehae Park, Nikkole Salter, Michael Shayhan, Jeanine Tesori, Charlayne Woodard, and more.

Charlayne Woodard, Jimmy Smits, Ben Feldman & More to Take Part in Ojai Playwrights Conference Benefit Gala

On June 4, 2022, the Ojai Playwrights Conference will celebrate 25 successful seasons with a Benefit Gala to be directed and produced by OPC Artistic Director/Producer Robert Egan at the Kirk Douglas Theatre in Los Angeles.

The Gala show, "Caring and Daring Together," will feature Luis Alfaro, Agyeiwaa Asante, Ben Feldman, Julie Garnyé, Christine Lahti, Raymond Lee, Jake Olson, Zharia O'Neal, John Ortiz, Tamberla Perry, Jeanne Sakata, Nikkole Salter, Ashley Sengstaken, Michael Shayan, Jimmy Smits, Josh Stamberg, Steven Weber, Michael Weston, Charlayne Woodard and Zakiya Young appearing in scenes from some of the best-known playwrights and plays supported through the OPC development process, along with newer work by more recent OPC playwrights.

Featured playwrights are Luis Alfaro, Jon Robin Baitz, Kimberly Belflower, Bill Cain, Stephen Adly Guirgis, Danai Gurira, Lisa Kron, Jiehae Park, Nikkole Salter, Michael Shayhan, Jeanine Tesori and Charlayne Woodard (their work developed at OPC is listed below).

The event will also honor the inspiration, vision and commitment of Luis Alfaro, Olga Garay-English and Kerry English (posthumously) with 2022 OPC Awards.

Funds from the benefit will support OPC programs, including the New Works Festival, set for August 7-14 in Ojai this year.

The Gala celebrates the rich history of OPC's work, as well as the legacy of Egan's leadership for the past 21 years. Egan has announced that he will pass the baton to a new artistic leader at the end of 2022.

The evening will begin with a 'welcome' cocktail hour at 6 p.m. and continue with the anniversary show at 7 p.m. and a post-show party with guest artists from the show. Tickets start at $250.

To purchase tickets go to: or call the box office at 805-633-1170.

For further info about the artists, go to:


Luis Alfaro: "No Holds Barrio" (2002); "Holy Road" (2005); "St. Jude" (2012); "St. Jude - Part Two" (2013); "My Father's House" (2020).
Jon Robin Baitz: "The Paris Letter" (2002); "Chinese Friends" (2003); "Other Desert Cities" (2010); "Vicuña" (2016); "Vicuña: The Epilogue" (2017); "Faraway Friends" (2018); "I'll Be Seein' Ya" (2020).
Kimberly Belflower: "John Proctor is the Villain" (2019).
Bill Cain: "The Laying On of Hands" (2005); "Equivocation" (2007); "Nine Circles" (2008); "How to Write a New Book for the Bible" (2009); "30.3 thirty three" (2013); "Hasty Pudding" (2014); "The Last White Man" (2017); "The Patriots" (2020).
Stephen Adly Guirgis: "The Little Flower of East Orange" (2005); "Motherf**ker with the Hat" (2009); "Between Riverside and Crazy" (2012).
Danai Gurira: "In the Continuum" (2004); "Eclipsed" (2008).
Jiehae Park: "Hannah and the Dread Gazebo" (2013); "peerless" (2015).
Nikkole Salter: "In the Continuum" (2004); "Of Great Merit" (2012).
Jeanine Tesori and Lisa Kron: "Fun Home" (2009).
Charlayne Woodard: "Flight" ((2003); "The Night Watcher (2007); "The Garden."


Current Covid safety protocols required by the Kirk Douglas Theatre at the time of the event will be followed.


Since 1998, theatre professionals and enthusiastic audiences have converged in Ojai to participate in the development of new plays for the American theatre. Plays developed at OPC have gone on to have numerous productions on Broadway, Off-Broadway, and at regional theatres across the country. Some have been nominated for and won prestigious awards. Both "Fun Home" by Lisa Kron and Jeanine Tesori, and Jon Robin Baitz's "Other Desert Cities" were Pulitzer Finalists; "Fun Home" won the Tony Award for Best Musical; and Danai Gurira's "Eclipsed" and Stephen Adly Guirgis' "The Motherf**ker with the Hat" were each nominated for the Tony Award for Best Play. In 2019, OPC received the LADCC Gordon Davidson Award for distinguished contribution to the Los Angeles theatrical community.

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