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Cast Set For WAKE UP! COMBATING CLIMATE CHANGE At Ojai Playwrights Conference


Cast Set For WAKE UP! COMBATING CLIMATE CHANGE At Ojai Playwrights Conference

The Ojai Playwrights Conference is announcing the cast for "WAKE UP! Combating Climate Change," one of two special Intersection Events being presented as part of the 2019 New Works Festival of new play readings and special performance events (August 4--11).

On Thursday, August 8, "WAKE UP! Combating Climate Change," an event designed to inspire awareness and action, will include dramatic works created through collaboration between current and former OPC playwrights, expert scientists, guest artists and The Climate Group, with Musical Advisor T Bone Burnett. Directed by Robert Egan and Ron Lagomarsino, and produced by Egan and Jerry Cope, the performance begins at 7 p.m. at the Matilija Auditorium in Ojai. A discussion with climate change specialists, including Neil Berg, associate director, UCLA Center for Climate Science, will take place after the performance.

The cast for the event includes Caroline Aaron, George Ball, Oded Fehr, Riad Galayini, Linda Gehringer, Robin Gerber, Sandra Tsing Loh, Kim Maxwell, Amanda McBroom, James Morrison, Seamus Morrison, Peter Strauss, Carl Thelander, Rachel Ticotin and Gideon Jeph Wabvuta, performing work by OPC playwrights Will Arbery, Jon Robin Baitz, Keith Bunin, Bill Cain, Sandra Tsing Loh, Sarah Treem, Alice Tuan, Gideoon Jeph Wabvuta and Bess Wohl. (***Please see links to photos at the end of this release.)

"Ojai is populated with amazingly talented people who are also seriously concerned citizens, about the state of our planet. We are so happy to have them bring life to these dramatic works igniting awareness and action on behalf of our threatened environment," states OPC Artistic Director/Producer Robert Egan.

The Festival kick-off is the Intersection Event, "WAKE UP! Imagining Our Future," a series of short, original works by the 2019 OPC playwrights, envisioning our future challenges and possibilities, on August 4 at 6 p.m. at the Zalk Theater at Besant Hill School.

Priced at $30, tickets for all events are available at ("Wake Up! Combating Climate Change" and the Youth Workshop on August 7 also offer a $10 student ticket.)

The eight playwrights chosen for the season range from emerging to veteran, and their work encompasses the deeply personal, as well as societal themes of race, class and more. The playwrights presenting new works are Kimberly Belflower with "John Proctor is the Villain"; Sam Chanse with "Monument, or Four Sisters (A Sloth Play)"; Kate Cortesi with "Love"; Inda Craig-Galván with "Welcome to Matteson!"; Dave Harris with "Tambo & Bones"; Kimber Lee with "untitled f*ck m*ss s**gon play"; James Morrison with "Leave Your Fears Here"; and Christopher Gabriel Núñez with "Locusts."

The two Young Artist Showcase events include an OPC Artistic Intern Workshop presentation, with solo performances by aspiring artists from colleges around the country (August 5 at 7 p.m.) participating in the two-week OPC Intern Program; and an OPC Youth Workshop presentation featuring new material by high school writers and performers (August 7 at 7 p.m.) participating in the week-long OPC Youth Workshop Program, mentored by OPC artistic staff and playwrights.

A complete schedule of events, dates and times is located on the final page of this release.

Since 1998, theatre professionals and enthusiastic audiences have converged in Ojai to participate in the development of new plays for the American theatre. Each year's participating playwrights - chosen through a rigorous selection process - join together for an intensive two-week, in-residence workshop program, which culminates in public workshop presentations featuring professional actors, during the OPC New Works Festival. In addition to the new play workshops, the Festival features prominent artists in engaging forums on a range of cultural and artistic subjects in the Intersections Series.

Many plays developed at OPC have gone on to have numerous productions on Broadway, Off-Broadway, and at regional theatres across the country. 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. Recently, one of OPC's youngest playwrights, and a playwright in residence for 2019, Liliana Padilla, was named the 2019 Yale Drama Series Prize winner for their play "How to Defend Yourself," which was developed at OPC in 2018; and Aziza Barnes' "BLKS" (developed at OPC in 2016) received enthusiastic critical response at Off-Broadway's MCC Theater.

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