Zoetic Stage Announces FINSTROM FESTIVAL OF NEW WORK Winners

The plays will each be given a virtual workshop with directors, dramaturges and actors, where the playwrights will be able to further develop and ready their plays.

By: Jun. 01, 2021
Zoetic Stage Announces FINSTROM FESTIVAL OF NEW WORK Winners

Zoetic Stage has announced the five winners of its first annual Finstrom Festival of New Work. They are Finding Neil Patrick Harris by Donna Hoke, The Guilt Mongers or Los Traficantes de Culpa (for those not willing to submit to the Anglicization of our people) by C. Julian Jiménez, The Equivalent of Sensation by Arianna Rose, One-Shot by Andrew Rosendorf and Baby Camp by Nandita Shenoy.

The winning plays will each be given a week-long virtual workshop with directors, dramaturges and actors, where the playwrights will be able to further develop and ready their plays for full productions. The workshops will culminate in a five day festival of readings from June 23 through June 27, 2021, presented on Zoetic Stage's Facebook page. More details about the festival including casting and showtimes are forthcoming.

Additionally, five other plays were chosen as runners-up. They are Does That Feel Good to You, My Lark? by Raquel Almazon, Rents by Katherine Burns, Kettlehouse by Robert Caisley, Broken by Aaron Braxton and Marianas Trench (Part One of The Second World Trilogy) by Scott C. Sickles.

The Finstrom Festival Adjudication Panel was comprised of playwright Hannah Benitez, director Tatyana-Marie Carlo, Finstrom Festival Coordinator Kent Chambers-Wilson, playwright Brian Cohen, director/playwright Rachel Finley, playwright/journalist Vanessa Garcia, Zoetic Stage Artistic Director Stuart Meltzer and playwright/director Eric Sharp.

"An amazing outcome of this festival is the seemingly untapped amount of talent that came to us. Play after play delivered plots and characters involved in a diversity of stories that should continue to be told," says festival coordinator Chambers-Wilson. While this first festival is being presented virtually, the intent is to eventually produce the program live and in person. "Our goal is for the Finstrom Festival to grow and evolve until we are producing fullly-staged new work in a repertory format," says Zoetic Stage Artistic Director Meltzer.

The festival is named after beloved South Florida playwright and arts patron Tony Finstrom, who was a long-time Carbonell Award judge and founder of the Silver Palm Awards. The author of numerous plays, Finstrom was the recipient of various honors including the Charlie Cinnamon Award and the South Florida Theatre League's Remy Pioneer Award. Mr. Finstrom passed away in December 2018.

About the Winning Playwrights

Donna Hoke's work has been seen in 47 states and on five continents. Plays include Brilliant Works of Art (Kilroys List), Elevator Girl (O'Neill, Princess Grace finalist, and Austin Film Festival finalist), Safe (winner of the Todd McNerney, Naatak, and Great Gay Play and Musical Contests), and Teach (Gulfshore New Works winner). She has been nominated for the Primus, Blackburn, and Laura Pels prizes, and is a three-time winner of the Emanuel Fried Award for Outstanding New Play (Seeds, Sons & Lovers, Once in My Lifetime). She has also received an Individual Artist Award from the New York State Council on the Arts to develop Hearts of Stone, and, in its final three years, Artvoice named her Buffalo's Best Writer-the only woman to ever receive the designation. Donna is an ensemble playwright at Road Less Traveled Productions - which will premiere her adaptation Little Women... Now in May 2022 - as well as a blogger, moderator of the 13,000+ member Official Playwrights of Facebook, New York Times-published crossword puzzle constructor; children's and trivia book author; and founder/co-curator of BUA Takes 10: GLBT Short Stories, and Dramatists Guild teacher and representative.

C. Julian Jiménez is a Queer, Puerto Rican and Dominican playwright. MFA from The New School for Drama. Playwriting awards include: New Dramatist Residency (Class of 2025), 2019/2020 Rita Goldberg Playwrights' Workshop Fellow at The Lark, 2017 & 2018 Pipeline Theatre Company PlayLab, 2018 LaGuardia Community College's LGBTQ History Project Grant, 2015 Queens Arts Council Grant, and the 2009 Public Theater Emerging Writers Group. Productions include: Man Boobs (Pride Films & Plays, 2011), Nico was a Fashion Model (Counter-Productions, 2013), Animals Commit Suicide (First Floor Theater, 2015), Locusts Have No King (INTAR, 2016), Bundle of Sticks (INTAR, 2020), Alligator Mouth, Tadpole Ass (Theatre Rhinoceros, 2020) and ¡Oso Fabuloso & The Bear Backs! (INTAR 2021). He wrote the book for LatinXoxo (Joe's Pub & Lincoln Center). Other plays include, Julio Ain't Goin' Down Like That and Bruise & Thorn. He is a co-producer and co-writer of the hit web series, Bulk, and an Associate Professor of Theatre at Queensborough Community College.

Arianna Rose is the recipient of the MAC Song of the Year Award, the York Theatre NEO Award, and various best play/playwright awards from Theatre Odyssey, Tree City Playhouse, Mixing It Up Productions, the Know Theatre, Studio 1 Theatre, Third Citizen Theatre Company, South Baldwin Theatre and Clocktower Theatre Company. Her plays and musicals have been presented in twenty-four states and seven countries. She is a four-time winner of Theatre Lab's New Works Festival competition, a two-time winner of Theatre Three's One-Act Play Festival and Theatre Odyssey's Ten-Minute Play Festival, a 2020 finalist for the Edward Kleban Lyric Writing Award and was one of three finalists for the 2020 Kenneth Branagh Award for New Drama Writing in the UK. She is one of four playwrights selected for the 2019-2021 Miami-Dade County Council of Cultural Affairs Playwright Development Program, moderated by Kia Corthron. M.F.A., NYU's Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program; B.A. in Theatre from Bucknell University; BMI-Lehman Engel Musical Theatre Writing Workshop. A proud member of ASCAP, Local 802, SEIU, New Play Exchange, The South Florida Theatre League, and the Dramatists Guild of America, where she serves as a Regional Ambassador. Founder and moderator of the Plays on Purpose/Miami New Musicals weekly writers group.

Andrew Rosendorf's work has been produced or developed at La Jolla, MCC, KC Rep, Signature Theatre, the National New Play Network, American Theater Company, Nashville Rep, City Theatre, Geva Theatre, Actor's Express, Curious Theatre Company, and Local Theater Company. He is an alum of NNPN's Playwright-in-Residence program, the Ingram New Works program, terraNOVA Collective's Groundbreakers Playwrights Group, and has been a SPACE on Ryder Farm, Tofte Lake Center, VCCA, and MacDowell Colony Fellow. He was a previous McKnight and Jerome Fellow at the Playwrights' Center. He is a current Core Writer with the Playwrights' Center and an Associate Artist with Local Theater Company.

Nandita Shenoy is a New York-based writer-actor who loves hearing an audience laugh. Most recently, her Rage Play was named to the 2020 Kilroys List. Her play, Washer/Dryer, has been produced multiple times nationally after its world premier at LA's East West Players and an Off-Broadway production in which she also starred. Her first full-length, Lyme Park: An Austonian Romance of an Indian Nature, was produced by the Hegira in Washington, DC, and Satisfaction had a developmental run at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. One-acts, Marrying Nandini, By Popular Demand, Rules of Engagement, You Are Here, and A More Perfect Date have been produced in New York City and regionally. Nandita has acted in world premiers of new plays by Richard Dresser, Madhuri Shekar, Chelsea Marcantel, Adam Szymkowicz, and Eric Pfeffinger as well as a season at the Alabama Shakespeare Festival. Nandita won the 2014 Father Hamblin Award in Playwriting and a 2018 Mellon Creative Research Fellowship at the University of Washington School of Drama in partnership with Ma-Yi Theater Company. She is a proud member of the Ma-Yi Writers Lab, the Dorset Theatre Festival's Women Artists Working group, and the Dramatists Guild. She also sits on the Steering Committee of the Asian American Performers Action Coalition (AAPAC) which won a 2020 Obie for their Advocacy in the Field of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion. Nandita holds a BA in English literature from Yale University. www.nanditashenoy.com

Visit www.zoeticstage.org for more information.