Zack Zadek and More Tapped for THE MITTEN LAB's 2017 Residency in Michigan

By: Sep. 07, 2017
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The MITTEN Lab (A Michigan Incubator for Theatre Talent Emerging Now), led by co-founders Katherine M. Carter and Rachel Sussman, has announced this year's artists for its second annual residency program in Northern Michigan, taking place October 8 through 15.

The 2017 MITTEN Lab artists will be Detroit-based playwright Morgan Breon, Philly-based playwright Jacqueline Goldfinger, and New York-based composer/lyricist Zack Zadek. This will be the first year in their permanent home at Bear Lake, MI.

In addition to their ongoing partnership with Parallel 45 Theatre, The MITTEN Lab is also proud to announce a new partnership with the Interlochen Center for the Arts, which will host a public presentation of works-in-progress by the 2017 artists. This presentation will take place on Saturday, October 14th at 7:30 PM at Interlochen's Harvey Theatre (4000 Hwy M-137, Interlochen, MI), and feature Interlochen Arts Academy students and faculty as well as Parallel 45 company members. Admission is free and no reservations are required.

The MITTEN Lab is an artist residency program located in Northern Michigan that provides early career theatre artists with the time, space, and support to develop new theatrical works and engage with the local landscape. Artists pay nothing to participate - housing, travel, studio space, and meals are provided.

"We are thrilled to support three such extraordinary and vibrant artists as Morgan, Jackie, and Zack for our second residency year and the first in our new home," said co-founders Katherine Carter and Rachel Sussman in a statement. "We are also honored to continue collaborating with our friends at Parallel 45 and begin establishing a relationship with the renowned Interlochen Center for the Arts. These meaningful partnerships reinforce our mission to provide early career theatre artists with a platform to share their work in an encouraging environment, and in turn, provide the local community with the opportunity to encounter fresh talent."

Focusing on the advancement of works in the performing arts, The MITTEN Lab seeks to cultivate early career playwrights, musical theatre composers, lyricists, librettists, choreographers, and performance artists, in an effort to strengthen the development of new theatrical work in Michigan. The MITTEN Lab began by working with three artists in 2016, and will expand to include more artists and longer residencies in in the future. At least one Michigan artist will be selected each year. Participation is currently by invitation only, but will ultimately lead to an open application process.?

The inaugural MITTEN Lab featured New York-based playwright Monet Hurst-Mendoza, Detroit-based playwright Emilio Rodriguez, and New York-based composer/lyricist Zoe Sarnak.

For more information, visit, or follow on Facebook: /themittenlab and Twitter: @mittenlab.


Morgan Breon's Portrait of a Wise Woman (an ode to her late grandmother), has been performed at Theatre Nova's inaugural Michigan Playwrights' Festival, the Two Muses' 2015 Playwriting Festival (winning Audience Favorite), Black and Brown Theatre, and the Detroit Fringe Festival. Her acting credits include No Child (Matrix Theatre Company), Romeo and Juliet and The Tempest (Shakespeare in Detroit), and the world premiere of A Kiss of the Sun for Pardon (Detroit Repertory Theater, nominated for three 2015 Wilde Awards). Morgan also played the lead role in "Black and Blue", winning the Audience Award in the 2015 BlackStar Film Festival. Holding four degrees from the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, Morgan is a motivational speaker and founder of the P.O.W.W.E.R. training youth mentoring program.

Jacqueline Goldfinger's new play, The Arsonists, currently has a NNPN Rolling World Premiere at Azuka Theatre, Know Theater, Capital Stage and Perseverance Theatre. She won the 2017 Horn-Yale Drama Prize for her play Bottle Fly and the 2017 Smith Prize for her play Babel. Bottle Fly will have a reading in London at The National Theatre's New Work Studio this fall. Her work has been produced and/or developed by theaters including The Kennedy Center, La MaMa, Orlando Shakes, New Georges, Vermont Stage, Seattle Public, Flashpoint, Theatre Exile, and Manhattan Theatre Works. She has worked on public performance art projects with FringeArts/Reading Terminal Market, Missing Bolts, and PAFA. Her work has been supported by the Emerson Stage Residency, Audrey Residency, Drama League Residency, YADDO, NEA ArtWorks, Independence Foundation, NNPN, The Lark, PlayPenn, Sewanee Writers Conference, among others. She is represented by Abrams Artist Agency.

Zack Zadek is an award-winning composer/lyricist, songwriter, and playwright. He has been named by Playbill as "A Contemporary Musical Theatre Writer You Should Know," is a 2017 MacDowell Fellow in Theatre and winner of the 2017 Weston New Musical Award for his book, music, and lyrics to Deathless, which opened at Goodspeed this spring (directed by Tina Landau). Zack's work has been developed at major American theatres, including The 5th Avenue Theatre, TheatreWorks Silicon Valley, Goodspeed Musicals, The Civilians, Merry-Go-Round Playhouse, Legacy Theatre, and NYMF, and in the UK at The London Theatre Workshop and Edinburgh Fringe. His songs have been performed by some of Broadway and West End's biggest names in performances at The Kennedy Center and across NYC, including Lincoln Center, Joe's Pub, (le) Poisson Rogue, and 54 Below. Zack is a founding member of Musical Theatre Factory, Johnny Mercer Writers Colony alum, SigWorks Finalist, 2017 Johnathan Larson Grant Finalist, and winner of the inaugural "Got Musical!" award from Disney Creative Entertainment. Upcoming musicals include The Crazy Ones (directed by Sam Buntrock), The Role of a Lifetime (directed by Jerry Mitchell), and a commission from CREO, as well as a play about a supermarket, and various TV/film writing.

Katherine M. Carter (Co-Founding Artistic Director) directs theatre, opera, and events. In addition to The MITTEN Lab, she is the founding Artistic Director of The Other Mirror, dedicated to adaptations for the stage. Katherine has worked with Westport Country Playhouse, Wolf Trap Opera, Playwrights Horizons, On Site Opera, Little Orchestra Society, 54 Below, Dixon Place, New Jersey Center for the Performing Arts, Boston Opera Collaborative, and New York University. Katherine is a 16'-17' Audrey Resident with New Georges, 16' Wolf Trap Directing Fellow, 16' Drama League First Artist and '15 Rough Draft Fellow, '11-'12 Playwrights Horizons Directing Resident. She is an alumnus of The Directors Company and Directors Lab Chicago. Proud New Georges Affiliated Artist, member of SDC and AGMA.

Rachel Sussman (Co-Founding Artistic Director). A native of Michigan, Rachel is a New York-based producer committed to nurturing accessible, inclusive work through creative collaboration. Rachel is also a co-founder of The Indigo Theatre Project, a theatre company of passion and purpose dedicated to producing readings that benefit related non-profit organizations, and is currently the Producing Artistic Director of The New York Musical Festival (NYMF). She has worked with Second Stage Theatre, RKO Stage, Goodspeed Musicals' Mercer Colony, The Sundance Institute Theatre Lab, Lincoln Center's American Songbook, The Tony Awards, and CREATE-Ireland in Dublin, Ireland. Most recently, she produced the Obie Award-winning production of The Woodsman (59E59, New World Stages). Rachel is a 2014-2016 Women's Project Producer Lab Time Warner Fellow and sits on the Advisory Board for Strangemen & Co. and the Musical Theatre Factory.

The nonprofit Interlochen Center for the Arts is a recipient of the National Medal of Arts and the only organization in the world that brings together: a 2,500-student summer camp program; a 500-student fine arts boarding high school; opportunities for hundreds of adults to engage in fulfilling artistic and creative programs; two 24-hour listener-supported public radio services (classical music and news); more than 600 arts presentations annually by students, faculty and world-renowned guest artists; a global alumni base spanning eight decades, including leaders in the arts and all other endeavors. For information, visit Interlochen online at

Parallel 45 Theatre is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that facilitates the collaboration of nationally-recognized artists in order to create high-quality productions for the northwest Michigan community. We believe that by engaging in public and collective acts of imagination, the theatre helps us to remember where we have been, understand where we are today, and examine where we are going. By producing a repertory of innovative new works, reinvented classics, and imaginative adaptations, Parallel 45 seeks to entertain, encourage critical thought, and inspire. We are the only resident professional theatre company in northwest Michigan. Go to


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