The Strawberry One-Act and Theater Festival to Run 7/14-31

The Riant Theatre (Van Dirk Fisher, Artistic Director), a nonprofit theatre providing a nurturing environment to playwrights and theatremakers of diverse cultural backgrounds, proudly presents the 29th Season of the Strawberry One-Act and Theatre Festival. The festival opens on July 14th and runs through July 31st. Each evening will feature a program of one to four plays out of twenty-nine one-act works presented in competition, and on selected evenings, one of five full-length plays. All performances are presented at the Theatre at St. Clement's (423 West 46th Street, between 9th and 10th Avenue, NYC).

Added this season is a special event - the world premiere of a new play In Mysterious Ways, written by Nejla K. Hubbard and directed by Van Dirk Fisher. This full-length play explores the subjects of Christian spirituality, forgiveness and faith. One Christmas Eve, a turn of events changes the course of two families' lives and catapults them in a direction they could never have imagined. When all hope is gone, how do they find the way?For more information, visit https://www.therianttheatre.com/item.php?id=246

Nicknamed "The American Idol for playwrights," the Strawberry One-Act Festival has been presenting New York premieres and world premieres of short theatrical works submitted for competition from across the country. Since 1995, it has produced over 1,500 one-act plays. Reflecting the diversity written into the mission of its presenter, the Strawberry One-Act and Theater Festival features plays that vary in length (from 15 to 90 minutes) and deal with wide array of topics, from stories of human connection and comedic takes on love and sex to works dealing with pressing social and political issues like teenage suicide, women's rights and gun control.

Strawberry One-Act Festival features a playoff-style competition, in which the audience members vote for their favorites, selecting six finalists. The chosen plays will be judged by the jury of industry experts. The winners receive awards for Best Director, Best Actor, Best Actress and Best Costumes. The main prize, The Best Play Award, comes with a $1,500 prize and a development deal for a full-length play produced by the Riant Theatre. Awards will be presented at the Closing Night Ceremony and Performance on July 31st at 7pm, at the Theatre at St. Clement's. In addition, some of the plays in the festival will be selected for publication in print in the festival's anthology The Best Plays From The Strawberry One-Act Festival: Volume Nine.

"I'm very happy that the Riant Theatre is able to offer so many playwrights, actors, singers and artists an opportunity to showcase their work," said Van Dirk Fisher, Artistic Director of the Strawberry One-Act and Theatre Festival. "The competition makes it an exciting event for the audiences, but at the end of the day all of our participants are winners as they use our event as an opportunity to network and develop future artistic collaborations," he further explains.

Strawberry Festival actor alumni includes Jesse Eisenberg, Chazz Palminteri, Ato Essandoh (2016 Jason Bourne/HBO's Vinyl/Elementary), Ving Rhames (2016 Bastards/Mission Impossible), and Chance Kelly (NBC's Aquarius/American Sniper). Among the playwrights presenting their work in this year's competition are pianist and performing composer Neil Wolfe and a two-time Emmy nominated producer Michael Selditch (Queer Eye for a Straight Guy).

There will be a Launch Party for the Festival at the Poet's Den Theatre (309 East 108th Street, NYC) on June 25th at 3pm, and a Wrap Party for the Closing Night Performance and Award Ceremony on July 31st, 7pm, at the Theatre at St. Clement's. Tickets (Festival shows: premium seating: $30 advance/$35 at the box office, general admission: $25 advance/$27 at the box office; Launch Party: $50 before June 15th, $60 after, also cash only at the door at the event; In Mysterious Ways: $50 Wednesday matinees, $60 evening performances; The Awards Ceremony: $30 Online, $35 cash only at the box office) are available through https://www.therianttheatre.com/ or by calling 646-623-3488. Check the website or call Box Office for information on Festival Pass discount packages.

All one-act works in the competition are presented live as well as streamed on-demand through the festival's Vimeo channel (https://vimeo.com/ondemand/strawberryoneactfestival) at $25 per play. Viewing a play online will also count as a vote for that piece. To see works from the past festival plays, buy a Vimeo subscription for $15 per month.

A separate competition, presented as the Video Diaries Project, is being held for short films about the artists in the Strawberry One-Act Festival. The films will be screened at the Launch Party on June 25th at the Poet's Den Theatre (309 East 108th Street), at 3pm. At the same event, The Pioneer of the Arts Award, honoring one outstanding artist selected by their peers, will be presented. The evening will conclude with a reception with food, drinks and dancing. Tickets are available through The Riant Theatre's website and box office and cost $50 before June 15th, $60 after that date. They can also be purchased (cash only) at the door. The video competition winners will be announced at the festival's Awards Ceremony and Performance on July 31st at the Theatre at St. Clement's (423 West 46th Street) at 7pm.

THE STRAWBERRY THEATER and ONE-ACT FESTIVAL SCHEDULE* indicates shows for mature audiences Saturday, June 25th at 3pmLaunch Party at the Poet's Den Theatre, 309 East 108th Street, NYC Video Diaries Project screening Pioneer of the Arts Award Ceremony and Reception,

Thursday, July 14th at 7pmTHE UNKNOWNS by Kacie DevaneySIXTY SHADES OF GREY by Amanda OrtegaEXPRESS TRAIN by Michael SelditchSEE YOU HAVE ME, book by Simone Allen and Ed Rosini; music and lyrics by Simone Allen

Thursday, July 14th at 9pmPSYCHIC CAFÉ by Anthony FuscoTHE G69 TRIPLE X-TREME OSCILLATOR by Peter M. CarrozzoCROCKETT'S LAST STAND by George Cameron GrantNIGHTS ON THE COUCH by Matt Fotis

Friday, July 15th at 7pmTHE OLD STATES by Lain KienzleJUST SAY IT THREE TIMES by Erin MoughonHIM AND HER, a musical, book, music and Lyrics By Matt AndersonTHE COMMUTERS or A CAUTIONARY TALE OF THE PORT AUTHORITY, a musical by Gil Varod, Caleb Damschroder and Kit Goldstein Grant

Friday, July 15th at 9pm A FRIEND by Anika BenkovTHE SHINING WORDS by Thomas M. WalshTHE ELEVATOR by Neil WolfeLIKE THROUGH A MIRROR by Joseph Lizard

Saturday, July 16th at 1pmBLACKBERRY WINTER by Kai Elijah HamiltonREALITY SUCKS by Sonia CordovesFAMILY GOOGLING by Mark D. TjarksTHE EARLY BIRD SPECIAL By John J. Ronan

Saturday, July 16th at 3pmFLIGHT 987 by Tina PosterliEULOGIES by Amanda Feliciano*THE SUICIDE JOURNALS by Veronique LaShell MacRaeGARBAGE by John Michael Wagner

Saturday, July 16th at 5pmPSYCHIC CAFÉ by Anthony FuscoLUCILLE ZANZIBARZ by Don RosenthalREVOLVER by Paul TrupiaA VIEW FROM THE BACK by Yi Shi

Saturday, July 16th, at 8pm IN MYSTERIOUS WAYS by Nejla K. Hubbard, directed by Van Dirk Fisher (Opening Night)

Sunday, July 17th at 3pmSIXTY SHADES OF GREY by Amanda OrtegaPSYCHIC CAFÉ by Anthony FuscoFAMILY GOOGLING by Mark D. TjarksA VIEW FROM THE BACK by Yi Shi

Sunday, July 17th at 5pmBLACKBERRY WINTER by Kai Elijah HamiltonTHE G69 TRIPLE X-TREME OSCILLATOR by Peter M. CarrozzoHIM AND HER, a musical, book, music and lyrics by Matt Anderson*THE SUICIDE JOURNALS by Veronique LaShell MacRae

Sunday, July 17, 7pm

THE UNKNOWNS by Kacie DevaneyTHE OLD STATES by Lain KienzleTHE SHINING WORDS by Thomas M. WalshNIGHTS ON THE COUCH by Matt Fotis

Sunday, July 17th at 9pmA FRIEND by Anika BenkovGARBAGE by John Michael WagnerTHE WAITRESS by Ainslie CaswellSEE YOU HAVE ME, book by Simone Allen and Ed Rosini; music and lyrics by Simone Allen

Monday, July 18th at 7pmEXPRESS TRAIN by Michael SelditchREALITY SUCKS by Sonia CordovesFLIGHT 987 by Tina PosterliTHE COMMUTERS or A CAUTIONARY TALE OF THE PORT AUTHORITY, a musical by Gil Varod, Caleb Damschroder and Kit Goldstein Grant

Monday, July 18th at 9pmJUST SAY IT THREE TIMES by Erin MoughonEULOGIES by Amanda FelicianoTHE ELEVATOR by Neil WolfeTHE EARLY BIRD SPECIAL by John J. Ronan

Tuesday, July 19th at 7pmCROCKETT'S LAST STAND by George Cameron GrantPUTIN AND THE SNOWMAN by Robert KerbeckLIKE THROUGH A MIRROR by Joseph LizardiGARBAGE by John Michael Wagner

Tuesday, July 19th at 9pmTHE G69 TRIPLE X-TREME OSCILLATOR by Peter M. CarrozzoTHE SHINING WORDS by Thomas M. WalshTHE WAITRESS by Ainslie Caswell*THE SUICIDE JOURNALS by Veronique LaShell MacRae

Wednesday, July 20th at 2pmIN MYSTERIOUS WAYS by Nejla K. Hubbard, directed by Van Dirk Fisher

Wednesday, July 20th at 7pmSIXTY SHADES OF GREY by Amanda OrtegaBLACKBERRY WINTER by Kai Elijah HamiltonREVOLVER by Paul TrupiaTHE COMMUTERS or A CAUTIONARY TALE OF THE PORT AUTHORITY, a musical by Gil Varod, Caleb Damschroder and Kit Goldstein Grant

Wednesday, July 20th at 9pmFLIGHT 987 by Tina PosterliPUTIN AND THE SNOWMAN by Robert KerbeckA VIEW FROM THE BACK by Yi ShiTHE WAITRESS by Ainslie Caswell



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