Theresa Rebeck Set for Theater Masters in Aspen, Now thru 1/29

Award-winning Broadway Playwright, and Creator of the hit NBC Series 'Smash,' Theresa Rebeck will join the Theater Masters' National MFA Playwrights Festival, tonight, January 26th - 29th as guest reader and mentor for the organization's 2013 winter season featuring a series of events ranging from open classes for actors and writers to panel discussions and the acclaimed "Take Ten," an evening of 10 minutes plays from leading MFA Playwriting Students from around the country---all taking place in various venues in Aspen, Colorado.

"We are thrilled to have Theresa Rebeck this season," said Julia Hansen, Theater Masters founder and Artistic Director - and former President of New York's Drama League. "In many ways how I started the Drama League's "Director's Project" is how I am now fostering new playwrights --- by discovering new playwrights through our National MFA Emerging Playwright program and making alliances with major theaters and playwrights like Theresa--- to guarantee the writer's work is developed and heard."

Kicking off the season on January 20th, the first event is an open class for actors and writers entitled Creating Original Works through Improvisation and Theater Games featuring New York theater director Stephen Cedars and New York producer and dramaturg Ariana Paganett. The fast-paced 2-hour class will focus on how to create scenes, characters, and plays using Improvisation and Theater Games. Continuing on Saturday, January 26th are two rare opportunities to join in a discussion and reception with this year's directors, winning playwrights, and celebrated guests. Entitled Fireside Chats: Theater Today Gives Voice to Timeless Ideas, the panel discussion will begin at 5PM at The Aspen Institute and will include Ms. Rebeck, award-winning playwright Primary Stages Artistic Director, Andrew Leynse, Theater Masters Founder Julia Hansen, and the 2013 winning playwrights. This event is FREE and open to the public. Following the panel discussion is the Benefit Dinner in Honor of the Playwrights. Hosted at the home of one of Theater Masters' benefactors, the intimate dinner will also serve as an evening of conversation on American Theatre with this year's directors and winning playwrights. The evening of dinner and conversation is $150 per person. Proceeds go to help make the National MFA Playwrights Festival possible.

The grand finale of this two-weekend festival, January 27th - 29th (7:30PM), is Take Ten: An Evening of 10 Minute Plays by aspiring MFA playwriting students from around the country. This year, finalists from CalArts, Carnegie Mellon, Columbia, NYU, University of Iowa, University of Texas-Austin, UCLA, and Yale will have their ten minute works presented in a full evening over a three-day period. These projects are nurtured in Aspen and after further development, receive a spring Equity showcase production in New York City

Based in Aspen, Colorado, Theater Masters is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to nurturing, developing, and producing or causing to be produced the work of the next generation of American Playwrights. In all their work, their goal is always to enhance audience understanding of, and support for, theater. Theater Masters is supported by: The City of Aspen, The Thrift Shop of Aspen, The State of Colorado, and the Elizabeth George Foundation.

Ticket prices for the 2013 National MFA Playwrights Festival are as follows: Creating Original Work through Improvisation and Theater Games on January 20th (10AM - Noon) is FREE and open to the public. Reservations are required. Please with your full name to reserve your slot in the class. Fireside Chats: Theater Today Gives Voice to Timeless Ideas on January 26th at The Aspen Institute/The Koch Building (5PM) is FREE and open to the public, no reservation necessary. The Benefit Dinner in Honor of the Playwrights following the panel discussion on January 26th is $150. Reservations can be made by Tickets for Take Ten (January 27th - 29th) at The Aspen High School Black Box Theatre (7:30PM) are $25, $12 for students. For reservations, please email

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