Fire This Time Festival Announces The Eight Emerging Playwrights For 10-Minute Plays

OBIE award winning The Fire This Time Festival (TFTT) announces today its 10th anniversary festival dates and the lineup of featured playwrights who comprise the centerpiece of the annual 10-minute play program.

In 2019, The Fire This Time Festival will run from January 21st to February 3rd at The Kraine Theater located at 85 E. 4th St., in New York City. Eight commissioned dramatists will receive NY premieres as part of the 10-minute play program: Kendra Augustin, Adrienne Dawes, Francisca Da Silveira, Samantha Godfrey, Garlia Cornelia Jones, Bernard Tarver, York Walker, and Kezia Waters. Kevin R. Free whose work has been seen in The Fire This Time Festival as both a playwright and director and also served as the Artistic Director of the company from 2013-2017, has been selected to direct the 10th annual 10-minute play program.

Recognized as a springboard for Black playwrights, The Fire This Time Festival is a destination for diverse audiences, producers and artists seeking new possibilities in contemporary theater. "Over the last 10 years, TFTT has been privileged to play a role in the development of early works by playwrights who are now garnering national acclaim such as Dominique Morisseau, Katori Hall, and Jordan E. Cooper, among others," says Kelley N. Girod, Founder and Executive Director, TFTT. She adds," Collectively, our stories shatter the myth of the Black monolith. Gripping short plays exploring love in the apocalypse, workplace violence, educational privilege and the bitterness of democracy as lived in the South, reflect the broad, multi-layered truths of the Black experience on stage."

Here is the following lineup of the 10-minute play program, the centerpiece event of TFTT, to be directed by Kevin R. Free: (These will be accompanied by full length play readings by season 9 playwrights and a panel discussion; the details of which will be announced at a later date.)

Sisterhood in the Time of the Apocalypse by Kendra Augustin

Two estranged sisters refuse to let anything derail the opportunity to bond with each other -- including the impending apocalypse.

scholarship babies by Francisca Da Silveira

"scholarship babies" is a cutting examination of educational privilege, affirmative action and what it truly means to go from rags to riches in today's society.

RUN.HIDE.FIGHT by Adrienne Dawes

When a disgruntled employee disrupts an emergency preparedness drill, crisis actors Soloway and Linnea find themselves trapped in an all too real scenario of workplace violence.

C.O.G.S by Samantha Godfrey

A young Brooklynite attends a protest rally with her aunt, on a family visit to the "Peach State," but she soon learns how bitter democracy can be in the sweet ole South.

Snapshots by Garlia Cornelia Jones

The beginnings and endings in the life of an African diasporan couple and their friends are revealed over seven years during various meals around the dinner table.


Just Another Saturday in the Park by Bernard Tarver

When two people meet in the park one morning, the past, present, and future of their neighborhood collide.

The White Shoes by York Walker

Set in the world of "A Raisin In The Sun," "White Shoes" follows George Murchison as he tries to win back Beneatha's affections after their recent breakup.

Sister by Kezia Waters

A story muddy and rhythmic like the blues provides a window into the relationship between a mystic grandmother, haunted with memories, and her grandson's ambitions. Is love enough?

About The Playwrights

Kendra Augustin is an NYC based actress, sketch comedian, and playwright. Her short plays, "Dying is an Art," "The Astonishing and The Lily," "Stranger," "Black Star," "Ella or the Baby," "All Dressed Up with Nowhere to Go," and "The Call of the Void" have been produced in various festivals throughout the United States and Canada. She is a part of the sketch community, Boogiemanja, as a writer. In 2015, Kendra and Patricia Cardona produced a short play festival called "The Leela NYC Theatre Festival in Queens.

Francisca Da Silveira is a Boston native and playwright who graduated from New York University's Tisch School of the Arts with a double degree in Dramatic Writing and History. She is currently a dramaturg and the Literary Manager at Company One Theatre in Boston. In 2018, she made ArtsBoston's list of 10 Contemporary Black Playwrights You Should Know. Her play "Weightless" was workshopped with Company One Theatre as part of the 2018 International Women's Day Festival. Her full length play "Heritage Hills Natural" received a world premiere at Boston's Fresh Ink Theatre in May 2018. She is attending the University of Edinburgh for a Masters in Playwriting in 2018-2019.

Adrienne Dawes is a mixed race AfroLatinx playwright originally from Austin, TX. Her plays include "Denim Doves," "Am I White" (Kilroy's List, 2015 winner of David Mark Cohen New Play Award and 2015 winner of B. Iden Payne Award for Outstanding Original Script), "You Are Pretty," "Jesus Loves Good Christians," and "Heritage, Her-i-tage, and Hair-i-tage." Her work has been produced by Sacred Fools Theater, Salvage Vanguard Theater, American Repertory Theatre of London, Live Girls! Theatre, Little Fish Theatre Company, New England Academy of Theater, New Jersey Repertory Company, Hyde Park Theater, St Idiot Collective and American Theater Company (Chicago, IL). Her plays have been published by Playscripts, Inc, Smith & Kraus, Heuer Publishing, Heartland Plays and Vintage Books.

Samantha Godfrey is recent graduate of New York University, MFA in Dramatic Writing. She is an Associate Member of the SDC Foundation, and an alum of both Directors Lab North, Toronto and Directors Lab Chicago. Samantha was a 2016 recipient of the Lloyd Richards Artistic Fellowship at Rebel Theatre, NYC and an Associate Artist at Center Stage. At Baltimore Center Stage, she was the Lynn & Tony Deering Artistic Director Fellow in service to Artistic Director.

Garlia Cornelia Jones is a writer, producer, photographer and mother. Garlia founded Blackboard Reading Series, a monthly series devoted to Black Playwrights in September of 2008, incubated by the cell, a performance space in Manhattan's Chelsea. She is an OBIE Award winning Theatre producer with Harlem9, the producing collaborative responsible for "48Hours in...Harlem". Garlia holds an MFA in Playwriting from The New School for Drama, and an MA in African American and African Diaspora Studies from Indiana University.

Bernard J. Tarver is an actor, playwright and producer. His play "Spooks", a commentary on lynching and police brutality, was performed at the 7th annual "48 Hours in...Harlem" ten minute play festival in 2017. "Space Relations," about gentrification, was produced in August 2014 for the StageBlack Play Festival performed in both New York City and Dallas, Texas.

Kezia Waters is a recent alum of Western Connecticut State University where he studied Theatre Arts. He is also a current Graduate Student at Ohio University. Kezia has performed in theatres across New England, as well as being an independent music artist and the founding member of a afrofunk band called "Black & Mild."

York Walker is a playwright/actor from Chicago, Illinois. His first and second full length plays, "Summer Of '63" and "Of Dreams To Come," received workshops at The American Conservatory Theatre as a part of their new work initiative. "Summer Of '63" was later selected for an Off-Broadway reading with The Actors Company Theater's New TACTics series. York received his MFA in Acting from The American Conservatory Theatre.

About the Director:

Kevin R. Free is an award-winning actor, playwright, director, producer and voiceover artist. His directing credits include "Lady Day at Emerson's Bar & Grill" (Portland Stage); "Nazis and Me" (Under St. Marks); "Forged in Fire" (Theatreworks CityTech); "The Bright Edges of the World" (Quicksilver Theater POC Summit); "Topdog/Underdog" (University of Arkansas, 2019); "The Last Five Years (Portland Stage, 2019); and "Blue Fire on the Water (Fresh Fruit Festival).

About The Fire This Time Festival:

The Fire This Time Festival was founded in 2009 by Kelley Girod to provide a platform for playwrights of African and African-American descent to write and produce evocative material for diverse audiences. Since the debut of the first 10-minute play program in 2010, presented in collaboration with Horse Trade Theater Group, The Fire This Time Festival has expanded into an annual theater festival which includes a flagship 10-minute play program, staged readings, a panel discussion and other programs.

Notable playwrights whose work has been featured by The Fire This Time Festival over the past decade include Katori Hall (book writer for "Tina: The Musical"; "The Mountaintop"; "Our Lady of Kibeho," "Hurt Village"), Dominique Morisseau (2018 MacArthur Fellow, book writer for the Broadway musical "Ain't Too Proud To Beg -- The Life and Times of The Temptations," "Paradise Blue," "Pipeline," "Skeleton Crew," and "Detroit '67"), Marcus Gardley ("The House That Will Not Stand," "Black Odyssey," "The Gospel of Lovingkindness"), Antoinette Nwandu (2017-2018 Paula Vogel Playwriting Award; Colt Coeur 2017-2018 Commissioned Playwright; "Pass Over"), Jocelyn Bioh ("School Girls, or the African Mean Girls," "Nollywood Dreams"), James Anthony Tyler ("Artney Jackson," "Some Old Black Man," "Dolphins and Sharks"), Jordan E. Cooper ("Ain't No Mo'"); Jireh Breon Holder ("Too Heavy For Your Pockets"), Patricia Ione Lloyd ("Eve's Song"); Aziza Barnes ("BLKS"); Charly Evon Simpson ("Behind The Sheet," "Stained," "Jump"); and Jonathan Payne ("The Revolving Cycles Truly and Steadily Roll'd").

About FRIGID New York:

FRIGID New York at The Kraine Theater (formerly known as Horse Trade) is a theater development group dedicated to incubating and producing boundary pushing theater all year round at its East Village base. Through its Resident Artist Program, FRIGID New York at The Kraine Theater offers residence to a select group of independent theater artists by pooling together a great deal of talent and energy while focusing on their individuality as independent companies. FRIGID New York is an outgrowth of the annual FRIGID Festival, the first and only festival of its kind in New York City to offer artists 100% of their box office proceeds and The Kraine Theater, a self-sustaining theater development and management group.

 



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