Sarah Ruhl Named 2018-19 Ingram New Works Fellow at Nashville Repertory Theatre
Acclaimed playwright Sarah Ruhl - who twice has been a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for drama, a Tony Award nominee and the recipient of a MacArthur "Genius" Grant - has been named as the 2018-19 Ingram New Works Playwriting Fellow at Nashville Repertory Theatre.
Ruhl will join the Ingram New Works Project at Nashville Rep, along with Ingram New Works Lab playwrights Lindsay Joelle, Dean Poynor, Riti Sachdeva and R. Eric Thomas. Nashville Repertory Theatre's playwright-in-residence Nate Eppler continues as director of the Ingram New Works Project.
"We're delighted to bring Sarah to Nashville," says Rene D. Copeland, artistic director of Nashville Rep. "There is no question that she is a brilliant artist. Her voice is so unique; every play is like an invitation into a new universe. Sarah Ruhl is precisely the sort of playwright the Ingram New Works Project was created to support."
Each season, Nashville Rep welcomes a dynamic cohort of artists into the Ingram New Works Project. Selected from a highly competitive pool of national applicants, Ingram Lab playwrights develop a new play supported by Eppler and the Ingram Playwriting Fellow. All five Ingram playwrights develop a new play over the course of the season and present their work to the public as part of the annual Ingram New Works Festival.
"Nashville is a city of storytellers and at this moment in time we desperately need them," Eppler says. "Each year we bring in extraordinary artists with extraordinary stories to share and Riti, Lindsay, Eric, and Dean are no exception. Nashville Rep is lucky to have them in residence. By amplifying their voices, we enrich our own community."
The Ingram New Works Project culminates in the annual Ingram New Works Festival where the developed plays are performed as staged readings by professional Nashville actors for the Nashville community. The Ingram New Works Festival is slated for May 8-18, 2019.
The Ingram New Works Project was created in 2009 with the support of co-founder Martha R. Ingram to provide an opportunity for theatre artists to develop new theatre works while in residency at Nashville Rep. Powered by a unique combination of transformational support and Nashville's radical hospitality, the Ingram New Works Project has supported the development of over 60 new plays for the stage that have gone on to development, awards, and production across the United States. The continuing journey of each of those plays and playwrights is made possible through the early support of Nashville audiences and artists and the Ingram New Works Project.
About the playwrights and fellow:
R. Eric Thomas is a playwright and the long-running host of The Moth in Philadelphia and D.C. He is also a Senior Staff Writer for Elle.com where he writes "Eric Reads the News," a daily current events and culture humor column. He won the 2016 Barrymore Award for Best New Play for Time Is On Our Side and the 2018 Dramatists Guild Lanford Wilson Award. He is the recipient of a 2017/2018 National New Play Network Commission and is at work on his debut memoir-in-essays, entitled Here For It, which will be published by Ballantine Books. Recent productions include Mrs. Harrison (Azuka Theater, Barrymore nomination: Best New Play), Miriam1234 (City Theater Miami) and Time Is On Our Side (About Face Theater & Simpatico Theater, finalist: Steinberg/ATCA New Play Award). He has been commissioned by the Arden Theater Company, Simpatico Theater and Act II Playhouse.
RITI SACHDEVA is a theatre maker and cultural worker who has been creating art in some shape, pattern, or rhythm for 25 years. Incorporating text, installation, and dance into her writing and performance, she straddles the practices and conventions of traditional U.S. theater, performance art, and international perspectives and approaches to theater. Riti has been a playwriting fellow with The Public Theater's EWG, WP Theater Lab, and the Dramatists Guild. Her plays have been developed by The Civilians, PlayWrights Center, National New Play Network, University of Hawaii, Working Theater, Centerstage Baltimore, and Lincoln Center Director's Lab. She is recipient of the Kennedy Center's Quest for Peace award for her play Parts of Parts & Stiches and a TCG travel grant to begin adapting her play Suicide Seed to the kathakali dance theatre form. Her play The Rug Dealer made the 2016 Kilroys List and was a finalist for the BAPF. Acting highlights include work with National Hispanic Cultural Center, PopUp Theatrics, Honest Accomplice, HBO, Disney, lots of cool indie films, an Outstanding One Act award from Planet Connections Festival for her solo show Scene/Unseen. Riti recently workshopped her new solo show, Behind Every Favorite Song is an Untold Woman, in New York City and Belize.
LINDSAY JOELLE is a playwright, lyricist, and librettist. Plays include Trayf (Theater J, Penguin Rep), The Garbologists (EST/Sloan Commission, PlayPenn), A Small History of Amal, Age 7 (Forward Flux/Pratidhwani) and The Princess of Riverside Drive (libretto, Vital Theater). She was the 2017-18 NNPN writer-in-residence at Curious Theatre and received the Rita Goldberg Award for Graduate Playwriting, Irving Zarkower Award, Anne Freedman Grant, and a Kilroys List Honorable Mention. Her plays have been developed at: PlayPenn, The Great Plains Theatre Conference, The Lark, The New Georges Jam, Luna Stage, Martha's Vineyard Playhouse, ESPA/Primary Stages, and have been finalists for the O'Neill National Playwrights Conference, Bay Area Playwrights Festival (Special Recognition), Leah Ryan's FEWW (Honorable Mention), JAW Festival, Jewish Plays Project, Blue Ink Award, Ingram New Works Lab, UMass New Play Lab, and Soho Rep Lab. New Georges affiliated artist, alumna of the BMI Musical Theatre Workshop, Columbia University (BA), and Hunter (MFA) where she studied under the mentorship of Tina Howe, Arthur Kopit, and Samuel D. Hunter.
DEAN POYNOR is a Southern playwright living in New York City. His work explores modern questions of faith, setting realistic characters against theatrical expressions and heightened language. Dean's plays have been developed and produced with Mixed Blood Theatre, The Lark, Visconti Productions (NYC), Nashville Repertory Theatre / Ingram New Works Lab, Great Plains Theatre Conference, The Playwrights' Center (Core Member Apprentice), Kennedy Center, Puzzle Festival NYC, Centre Stage Greenville (New Play Festival Winner), Trustus Theatre (New Play Festival Winner), The NiA Company, Arena Players Repertory Theatre, Hyde Park Theatre, and others including Cairns Festival Australia, Piccolo Spoleto Festival, and in residency at The Studios of Key West. Dean has received the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation screenplay award, the Helford Prize for Drama, Holland New Voices Playwright Award, two Shubert Foundation fellowships, and been a Finalist or Semi-Finalist for a whole bunch of other stuff. BA Wheaton College, Wheaton, Illinois. MFA Carnegie Mellon University. Dean's latest adventure is being a first-time dad.
Sarah Ruhl's plays include How to Transcend a Happy Marriage; For Peter Pan on Her 70th Birthday, The Oldest Boy, In the Next Room: or The Vibrator Play (Pulitzer Prize finalist, Tony Award nominee for best play); The Clean House (Pulitzer Prize Finalist, The Susan Smith Blackburn Prize); Passion Play (Pen American award, The Fourth Freedom Forum Playwriting Award from The Kennedy Center); Orlando, Late: A Cowboy Song, Dear Elizabeth, Dead Man's Cell Phone, Eurydice and Stage Kiss. Her plays have been produced on Broadway at the Lyceum by Lincoln Center Theater, off-Broadway at Playwrights Horizons, Second Stage, and at Lincoln Center's Mitzi Newhouse Theater. Her plays have been produced regionally all over the country and have also been produced internationally and have been translated into more than ten languages. Ruhl received her MFA from Brown University where she studied with Paula Vogel. She has received the Steinberg Distinguished Playwright award, the Susan Smith Blackburn award, the Whiting award, the Lily Award, a PEN award for mid-career playwrights, and the MacArthur "Genius" award. Her book of essays, 100 Essays I Don't Have Time to Write, was published by Faber and Faber was a Times Notable Book of the Year. She teaches at the Yale School of Drama and lives in Brooklyn with her family.
About the Ingram New Works Project
The Ingram New Works Project is a locally valued and nationally recognized new play development program that cultivates and amplifies new voices for the stage and expands the creative capacity of Nashville by connecting artists and audiences across extraordinary new works. The Ingram New Works Project was created in 2009 with the support of co-founder Martha R. Ingram to provide an opportunity for theatre artists to develop new theatre works while in residency at Nashville Rep. Powered by a unique combination of transformational support and Nashville's radical hospitality, the Ingram New Works Project has supported the development of over 60 new plays for the stage that have gone on to development, awards, and production across the United States. The continuing journey of each of those plays and playwrights is made possible through the early support of Nashville audiences and artists and the Ingram New Works Project.