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Columbia University School of the Arts to Present New Plays Festival

Columbia University School of the Arts faculty includes David Henry Hwang, Lynn Nottage, Charles Mee, and Rogelio Martinez.

Columbia University School of the Arts to Present New Plays Festival

Columbia University School of the Arts will present an expanded festival of new plays written by Columbia MFA Playwriting Students. The esteemed faculty who have nurtured these students, including Tony, Pulitzer, and Obie Award winners such as David Henry Hwang, Lynn Nottage, Charles Mee, and Rogelio Martinez invite you to experience these innovative new playwrights.

This is the second round of our New Plays Festival presenting the work of the 2020, 2021, and 2022 Playwrights of Columbia's MFA Theatre Program. The festival will run continuously throughout the summer.

From the Head of Playwriting, David Henry Hwang: "These plays have been created by visionary writers under extraordinary circumstances. Some were originally scheduled to be produced as far back as 2020; others were written during the pandemic itself. Like theatre itself, they have survived the shutdown of our art form to come roaring back to life. We are so proud of what our writers have achieved during these challenging and traumatic times. Enjoy the rebirth!"

About the Plays

Good Things Happen by Martin Murray


A working class mother finds a bag of stolen money - more than she could ever hope to earn in her lifetime. But what does the average mom even do with that much cash? And how far will she stretch her moral compass if it means making her family's wildest dreams come true? Good Things Happen is a nostalgic neo-noir chock full of blue collar crime, money laundering, VHS tapes, phonebook deliveries, manifestation, and pepperoni pizza.

Performances:
Thursday, June 2 at 2:30pm
Saturday, June 4 at 2:30pm
Saturday, June 4 at 8pm

Tickets: FREE
Location: Lenfest Center for the Arts 615 W. 129th St., New York, NY 10027
Ticketing Info: https://www.showclix.com/event/npf9-goodthings-happen

People on Earth by Sam Grabiner


An audience gathers. They sit in a circle. And the actors begin to tell them a story...

We are in a prehistoric forest and the trees are dying. Two strangers meet on the outskirts of an ancient city. An iPhone buzzes in a small boat on a stormy sea at night.

As epic as it is intimate, People on Earth takes us on a three-hundred-million-year journey from primordial extinction, through to the not-so-distant future. A play about human progress. And what is lost along the way.

Performances:
Friday, June 3 at 2:30pm
Friday, June 3 at 8pm
Sunday, June 5 at 2:30pm

Tickets: FREE
Location: Lenfest Center for the Arts 615 W. 129th St., New York, NY 10027
Ticketing Info: https://www.showclix.com/event/-people-onearth-npf10

Eärendil, Our Most Beloved Star by Adam North

Jimmy Byers, a failed startup founder, gets a job working for reclusive billionaire Felix Marshall, whose investment portfolio includes everything from banking apps to cryonics. The strange requirements of the job include a regimented diet, constant travel, and no actual work. A queer gothic story set in the tech world, Eärendil, Our Most Beloved Star explores the nature of transactional relationships, and whether humanity has commodified everything, right down to the heart.

Performances:
Thursday, June 9 at 2:30pm
Saturday, June 11at 2:30pm

Tickets: FREE
Location: Lenfest Center for the Arts 615 W. 129th St., New York, NY 10027
Ticketing Info: https://www.showclix.com/event/npf11-earendil-belovedstar

The Lark Ascending by Jacob K. Robinson

A Staged Reading
It's the first week of advent at a megachurch in Texas and a congregant's baby has died. Mike, the head pastor, is praying for resurrection. Tess, the worship pastor, is praying for release. Gideon, her husband, is just trying to help. And they're all barely holding on. The Lark Ascending is a play about reckoning with a garden overrun with vines, about bolstering and faltering faith, about darkness and light and how, in the end, they might be the same thing.

Performances:
Friday, June 10 at 2:30pm
Friday, June 10 at 8pm
Sunday, June 12 at 2:30pm

Tickets: FREE
Location: Lenfest Center for the Arts 615 W. 129th St., New York, NY 10027
Ticketing Info: https://www.showclix.com/event/npf12-lark-ascending

Martin Murray is a writer based in New York. His full-length plays include The Spot, Family Show, and Coliseum. In 2019, his one-act play 360 Owl Head was produced at Shanghai Theater Academy. In 2020, the feature film he co-directed Sleepaway Slasher premiered on Amazon Prime. His short play, Sarasota, FLA. was presented in the PlaySonos: Digital Audio Play Festival in 2021. Martin's screenplay Miranda was selected for the 2022 Columbia Blue List. Currently, Martin is developing an original screenplay with Troma Entertainment and he is a writer at The Wonder. BA; Binghamton University. MFA; Columbia University.


Sam Grabiner is a playwright from London. His play Next Year In Jerusalem! was a finalist for The O'Neill's National Playwrights Conference (2021) and won the Roundabout Theatre New Play Reading Series (2020). Neptune was shortlisted for the 2019 Bruntwood Prize, and he is a resident playwright at Papatango Theatre Company. He has completed residencies at the Bush Theatre in London and is a graduate of The Royal Court Theatre's Young Writers Programme. He co-runs the theatre company Pelican, whose high energy physical comedy shows have toured internationally. He is a graduate of the clown school L'ecole Philippe Gaulier.


i??Adam North is a New York based playwright from Virginia. Plays include Central Air (Winner: Columbia@Roundabout Reading Series Competition, Semi-finalist: O'Neill Playwrights Conference); Full Course Menu (Fresh Fruit Festival 2020, Winner: Best Performance, Act One One Act Fest), Spin (Columbia@Roundabout Finalist), Home Delivery (New Harmony Project Finalist, Geffen Theater Annex), and dance theater projects such as NeverWonderLand (Ovation Award Nomination) The Jungle Book (Miles Memorial Playhouse). In 2020, Adam was commissioned to write libretti for Life, Liberty, Happiness, an opera in three acts with composers David T. Little, Nico Muhly, and Jeanine Tesori (Fun Home). Adam is currently writing a live, three-hour show for Virgin Voyages, Richard Branson's new cruise line. Adam co-wrote and co-directed Complete Works, a comedy series about a National Shakespeare Competition that aired on Hulu in 2013. During his time in Los Angeles, Adam also worked as a feature film development executive at Columbia Pictures and Activision Blizzard Studios. At one point, he was also a PA on The Apprentice. Adam has an MFA in Film Producing and a BA in English Literature, both from University of Southern California, and an MFA in Playwriting from Columbia University.

Jacob K. Robinson is a playwright from Texas. He likes a good pair of Levi's and mowing the lawn. He writes plays about buildings, astronauts, swimming pools, surgeons, gold mines, Texas bars, and churches. He is doing his best.

About Columbia University School of the Arts:

The Oscar Hammerstein II Center for Theatre Studies at Columbia University School of the Arts presents a season of thesis acting and directing productions as well as a festival of new plays by emerging playwrights each year. The Theatre Program at the School of the Arts offers MFA degrees in: Acting, Directing, Playwriting, Dramaturgy, Stage Management, and Theatre Management & Producing. For more information about the Theatre Program, visit: http://arts.columbia.edu/theatre.




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