Tennessee Playwrights Studio Announces 2022 Fellows And Associates

TPS will continue to cast actors from the Nashville community for workshops and readings.

2023-24 Shakespeare in American Communities Grants Revealed

Tennessee Playwrights Studio, a new-play development lab and theatre production company based in Nashville, has announced its Fellows and Associates for 2022. Five TPS Fellows, chosen from a competitive application process, will work under the direction of Kenley Smith to develop new full-length scripts that will be presented in public readings (either virtually or in-person at the Darkhorse Theatre) in late 2022/early 2023, and two Associates will also contribute to monthly workshop sessions in 2022. TPS will continue to cast actors from the Nashville community for workshops and readings.

Bios for 2022 Fellows and Associates are as follows:

Jaclynn Jutting (Fellow) is an award-winning freelance director and teaching artist, working out of Nashville and Chicago. Her work as director focuses on the contemporary play and contemporary adaptations of classics. She most recently directed the U.S. premiere of Lucy Kirkwood's MOSQUITOES with Chicago's Steep Theatre and was an Artist in Residence at Vanderbilt University, directing Annie Baker's UNCLE VANYA. She has directed with Steppenwolf, Raven, Nashville Repertory Theater, Actors Bridge Ensemble, Verge Theater and Oz Arts Nashville. She has worked at MTSU, Nashville Public Library and was the Director of the BFA-Directing program at Belmont University. She received her BA from Knox College and an MFA in Directing from Northwestern University. She is currently an adjunct professor at Lipscomb University, teaching a solo performance class at the Debra K. Johnson rehabilitation center.
Emmalee Manes (Fellow) is a playwright with a passion for story-sharing across cultures. After graduating as a double major in Creative Writing and Journalism from Lee University in Cleveland, Tennessee, she moved to rural Japan, where she taught English in Japanese public schools for three years, before returning to the states and settling down in Nashville. Her 10-minute plays have been produced at Lee University and The Art Thing in Toyama, Japan. Outside of theatre, Emmalee enjoys film, non-fiction, and poetry. She served as Director of Toyama International Film festival for three years and was the Content Manager for the 2021 Nashville Film Festival. She has also enjoyed working to further U.S.-Japan relations as the Social Media Coordinator at Nashville's Japanese Consulate. Most recently, Emmalee received Lee University's 2020 Young Alumni Grant to complete her first full-length play, FOLDING, which was workshopped at Nashville's Pipeline-Collective.
Kate McGunagle (Fellow) is a queer writer, artist, and Montana native whose creative work centers around gender, identity, and the body, especially in the context of violence, media, and community. Her fiction and nonfiction have appeared or are forthcoming in Passages North, Five Points, The North American Review, and The Whitefish Review, and her essay "Passive Voice" was the recipient of the 2021 Terry Tempest Williams Prize in Creative Nonfiction. A graduate of Princeton University and Boston University's M.F.A. program in Creative Writing, Kate has over fifteen years of performance experience and is currently an active member of Nashville's Pipeline Collective. Her first play, Woman Bird Man, examines a Montana-based religious cult whose members grapple with identity, truth, and redemption in the space of one fateful weekend. She currently lives in Nashville.
Amina S. McIntyre (Fellow) is an Atlanta based playwright whose productions and readings include: Actor's Express, Atlanta History Museum, Working Title Playwrights, Lenoir-Rhyne University, Out of Hand Theatre, and The Blue Series (2019 Taurean Award Nominee for Excellence in Theatre) and Vanguard Repertory Theatre (Suzi Bass Award Winner). She has received her BA in Anthropology from Colby College, MA in African American and African Diaspora Studies from Indiana University, MFA in Creative Writing (Playwriting) at Spalding University, and Masters of Theological Studies from Emory University. She was a Playwriting Apprentice at Horizon Theatre Company, Managing Director of Karibu Performing Arts, 2014-2016 Atlanta Region Young Ambassador for the Dramatist's Guild, Co-Producer of WeReckon: A Southern Chronicle and the City of Atlanta Office of Cultural Affairs 2014-2015 Emerging Theatre Artist. McIntyre currently serves as Co-Founder of the Hush Harbor Lab and is a Ph.D student in Religion at Vanderbilt University.

Melissa McKnight (aka Graceful Honeybee) (Associate) is one of those multiple-creative-outlet-chasing-bohemians you may have heard about. Her foundation of Performing and Visual Arts was established in her hometown of Miami, Florida, and her immediate family's relocation to Tulsa, Oklahoma when she was 9 years old cemented her sense of irony! Since graduating from The University of Oklahoma in 2010, she's worked as a backup singer, sang in the award winning Sweet Adelines Show Chorus, and worked as an organizer on Barack Obama's incumbent campaign in 2012. She began performing as a standup comedian six years ago and hosted The Moth storySLAM in Nashville from May 2019 to December 2020. Her work highlights the absurdity and wonderment of meta-modernist living. In addition to inspiring others to think critically about their existence within a society where few profit from the suffering of many, she hopes to see the stories she's writing come to life on stage.

René Millán (Fellow) The son of Mexican immigrants, René Millán was born and raised in San Diego, CA, the youngest of five boys. Millán attended the prestigious Professional Actor Training Program at the University of Washington in Seattle where he devised two theatrical pieces dealing with immigration, ethnic identity and social justice. The foundation of his studies and his inspiration for devised pieces is the Suzuki Method of Actor Training; a physical mode used to build a bridge between mind, body and spirit- a method he teaches and has expanded on. René has lived and worked in New York City and Los Angeles where he has acted on Broadway, Off Broadway, film and television. He has also starred in plays at major regional theaters around the country including the Guthrie, Mark Taper Forum, La Jolla Playhouse and Yale Rep where he also received a Beinecke visiting scholar fellowship to teach Suzuki inspired movement and acting. He was a core acting company member of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival for seven seasons. Throughout his career he has devised and collaborated on theatrical works combining movement, text, and multimedia platforms. He teaches acting through Millán Acting Studio and is based in Nashville, TN where he also directs and acts. He has a performance piece and film based on the artist Martín Ramírez in the works. He lives with his wife and three children.

Christan Riley (Associate) was born and raised in Nashville, TN. She attended Fisk University where she performed as a Jubilee Singer and enjoyed her matriculation at the HBCU as a Spanish major. From painting and playing the piano to writing skits, dancing, and acting in plays, Christan has loved all things arts since she was a kid. She has been affiliated with Dream 7 Theatre Productions for 20 yrs and operates as the youth director and secretary of the board. She has written several plays and is currently co-writing a musical about The Original Fisk Jubilee Singers through a Metro Arts Thrive Partnership Grant with Dream 7/A.R.T.S. "Theatre and writing is truly part of my passion. I know I'm walking in purpose, because I ENJOY doing the work!" She is a loving wife and mother of 4 children. She feels blessed to work on her passions from home.2023-24 Shakespeare in American Communities Grants Revealed


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