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New York Stage and Film Announces 2020 Artists/Projects-in-Residence


NYSAF provides residencies and mentorships for artists.

New York Stage and Film Announces 2020 Artists/Projects-in-Residence

New York Stage and Film, continuing its commitment to developing and supporting new work and the artists that create it, announces the 2020 Artists/Projects-in-Residence, part of its ongoing NYSAF NOW programming: Shairi Engle, Morgan Green, Khiyon Hursey, Monet Hurst-Mendoza, Jian Jung, Ilya Khodosh, Sandra Tsing Loh, Molly Beach Murphy, Phanésia Pharel, Brian Quijada, Christina Quintana (CQ), Nygel D. Robinson, Keenan Scott II, Susan Tenney, Lucie Tiberghien and Lily Wolff.

NYSAF provides residencies and mentorships for artists to support them in a range of ways, from readings and one-on-one notes sessions to rehearsals and creative networking. Each process is unique and addresses the needs of artists as they articulate them. This year, NYSAF has expanded this programming in response to the COVID pandemic to offer more opportunities for more artists.

"New York Stage and Film supports artists through flexible, responsive processes that adapt to the needs of their work. From the moment the pandemic began, we met with our community to listen to how we could best provide the support they wanted in this moment," said Artistic Director Chris Burney. "These are some of the results: deeper, ongoing development of artists' work, inspired by them and tailored directly to their needs, supported by payments and professional development opportunities."

"This reflects NYSAF's broader push to keep expanding our curatorial approach and our commitment to equity and access. We want a wider community of artists to have the agency they need to shape NYSAF to their vision," Burney continued. "For some of these projects, NYSAF will act as a producer, dramaturg or a creative match-maker; in other cases, we'll simply provide administrative support and a platform for artists to share their work. Even though we aren't gathering this summer for our typical Powerhouse Season, this has been a wonderful opportunity to redefine development collaboratively and to engage nearly 150 exciting artists so far, with more to come."



A new play about identity and immigration

Monet Hurst-Mendoza (Playwright; she/her) is an NYC-based playwright from Los Angeles, CA. Her plays have been developed with Rising Circle Theater Collective, Astoria Performing Arts Center, American Academy of Dramatic Arts, Amios, |the claque|, Magic Time @ Judson, Atlantic Acting School/NYU Tisch, The Flea Theater, WP Theater, The Public Theater, Classical Theatre of Harlem, and the ICA Boston, among others. Monet is an alum of the Emerging Writers Group at The Public Theater, R&D Group at The Civilians, WP Theater Playwrights Lab, Fresh Ground Pepper's Playground Playgroup, and the Van Lier Fellowship at New Dramatists. She has held residencies with The Other Mirror, The MITTEN Lab, and SPACE on Ryder Farm. She is currently a Story Editor on "Law and Order: SVU." Member of The Kilroys, The Dramatist Guild, and WGAE.


In the days after a storm devastates the Texas Gulf Coast in 2008, IKE follows a myriad of storm survivors as they try to make sense of a town reduced to rubble, a collapsing US economy and the surreal truths of who we prove to be in the midst of complete upheaval. Directed by Morgan Green. Design consultation by Jian Jung. Dramaturgy by Lilly Wolff.

Molly Beach Murphy (Playwright; she/her) is a playwright from Galveston, Texas. Plays include: The Air Got Thick (Alley at Ucross); IKE (2019 Drama League Beatrice Terry Resident); Molly Murphy & Neil deGrasse Tyson On Our Last Day On Earth; Big Bend in the Red Dirt Desert. With core collaborators Annie Tippe and Jeanna Phillips, Molly co-creates experimental musicals such as Cowboy Bob as well as two new pieces in early development. Molly's work has been developed with New York Theater Workshop, New York Stage & Film, Williamstown Theater Festival, Ars Nova, The Alley Theatre, Page 73 Productions, The Civilians' R&D Group, The Orchard Project, the Ucross Foundation, Rockefeller Brothers' Fund, Yale Institute for Music Theater, Village Theater Festival of New Musicals, NYMF, Pipeline Theater Company. Molly was a Semi-finalist for the Page 73 Playwriting Fellowship and is a New Georges Affiliated Artist. Published works appear in Vol. 1 Brooklyn, The Hairpin, Santa Ana River Review & American Theatre Magazine.


On the Caribbean island of Quisqueya (Haiti and the Dominican Republic), where war has erupted, vulnerable bodies are under the reign of soldiers and fire. A Waitress escapes onto a resort in the midst of writing her novel; telling the story of a beautiful young woman named Lucky. As she writes the novel comes to life, shifting between the resort and Lucky's world. As the waitress weaves Lucky's path to womanhood, Lucky is forced to sacrifice her home and body. What does triumph look like in a world numb to Black girls suffering?" The women of Lucky refuse to burn.

PHANÉSIA PHAREL (Playwright; she/her) is a Haitian-American playwright who addresses the divine metaphysical dilemma of Black and Latinx girlhood. Her plays span revolutions, islands, and Afro-Futurism. Her play, Penelope, was selected as one of four in the nation to be workshopped at the International Thespian Festival and was subsequently published in Dramatics Magazine and by Samuel French. Her play, Shovel Me Away, was produced at Micro Theater Miami and received the Best of The Best 2016 award. Her monologue, My Kid, My Life, appears in the 2015 City Theatre anthology. She attends Barnard College of Columbia University where she recently won the Brandt Playwriting award and the Helen Prince Memorial Prize for excellence in dramatic composition. She is currently a National Playwright in Residence for the Echo Theater Company in Los Angeles.

THE MADWOMAN AND THE ROOMBA: My Year of Domestic Mayhem

The MadWoman and the Roomba, the follow up to her New York Times bestselling book THE MADWOMAN IN THE VOLVO, is a chronicle of the indignities, hilarities, and unexpected joys of life in the so-called golden years. Having been promised crystal clear seas and sandy beaches on the shores of retirement by glossy advertisements and in-flight magazines, best-selling author Sandra Tsing Loh finds the reality of being 55-years-old looks more like a dilapidated craftsman house with a dead lawn and a mouse problem. With deadpan wit and fearless honesty, Loh navigates the realities of what it means to be a middle-aged, "downwardly-mobile," woman in America, living what feels like a "disorganized twenty-five-year-old's life in a malfunctioning eighty-five-year-old's body." Among the chaos of life with teenage daughters, sporadic employment, an underemployed bohemian partner, and near-constant low-level anxiety, Loh revels in the restorative joy of laughter. And the blessed redemption of a Costco membership: personal massage chair! Roombas on sale! Delicious $4 wines! Massive tins of mixed nuts! While balancing the various demands of midlife work, motherhood, friendship, and romance (while also embracing her inner goddess) Loh finds herself repeatedly marveling at the often ludicrous realities of modern American life and its #SecondWorldProblems.

Sandra Tsing Loh (Playwright; she/her) is a writer, performer, and radio commentator. Her work has been heard on NPR's Morning Edition and This American Life. She is a contributing editor to the Atlantic and host of the syndicated daily radio "minute," The Loh Down on Science.


Frank McCourt is known to the world as the beloved author of Angela's Ashes, a poignant and hilarious Pulitzer Prize-winning memoir of his impoverished childhood in the slums of Limerick, Ireland. But before he published his masterpiece at age 66, he spent thirty years as a devoted teacher in New York City public high schools. A whimsical iconoclast and a virtuosic storyteller, McCourt found humor in autobiographical tales of deprivation and resilience. He taught generations of burnt-out, overwhelmed students to overcome their fear and doubt, and to tell their own stories. McCOURT, adapted from his memoirs 'Tis and Teacher Man, picks up the narrative where Angela's Ashes left off. We meet him as a young immigrant who arrives in New York with bad eyes and teeth, penniless and desperate to put his traumatic past behind him. He is a hotel janitor and longshoreman, hauling crates on the docks, and cleaning up after wealthy guests whose privilege feels otherworldly to him. After being drafted in the Korean War, without so much as a high school diploma, he used the GI Bill to enroll in NYU, where he felt like an impostor - until he came to understand that his miserable past held the key to his unique and wonderful contribution to the world, and to his happiness. Directed by Susan Tenney

ILYA KHODOSH (Adaptor and Playwright; he/him) holds a D.F.A. from the Yale School of Drama. He recently taught playwriting at Williams College, where he created Our Time, a production celebrating Stephen Sondheim's ninetieth birthday, and had the honor of interviewing Sondheim about his time at Williams. Ilya is an accomplished Russian translator currently working on an adaptation of Chekhov's Three Sisters. An occasional monologist, he wrote and performed two solo storytelling shows at the United Solo Theatre Festival.


Mexodus is a concept album inspired by the estimated 4,000-10,000 enslaved people in the Southern part of the United States who pursued a journey into Mexico instead of looking north. This under told chapter of the Underground Railroad is an exploration of Black and brown bodies standing together against oppression. Initially conceived in 2018, Brain and Nygel put pen to paper in March 2020 and intend to release one track a month for one year as of June 2020. All tracks can be heard at

Brian Quijada (Co-Creator; he/him) is an actor, playwright, and composer whose original work has been developed and produced all across the country. His hip-hop solo show Where Did We Sit on the Bus? has been produced at Victory Gardens, Teatro Vista (Jeff Award), Ensemble Studio Theatre (Drama Desk Nomination), Boise Contemporary, 1st Stage, and City Theatre Pittsburgh. His plays have been developed at The Millennium Stage at The Kennedy Center, Pittsburgh CLO's Spark Festival, Victory Gardens' Ignition Festival, New Stage and Film's Powerhouse Festival, and The Eugene O'Neill Theater Center's National Musical Theatre Conference. Commissioning institutions include Seattle Repertory Theater, A.R.T., and The Kennedy Center. Member of The Ensemble Studio Theatre.

NYGEL D. ROBINSON (Co-Creator; he/him) is a singer, actor, writer, and multi-instrumentalist based in New York City. Nygel has been consistently working in New York and regionally as an actor/singer/musician. Past credits include Larry in the workshop and Lincoln center concert version of Beau, Jesus in Godspell (St. Michael's Playhouse), Actor/Musician in The All Night Strut (Milwaukee Rep), and Actor/Musician in Blue Suede Shoes and That's Amore (Florida Studio Theatre). Nygel has a new kids song "I Wanna Dance" that will be released later this year with Jam With Jamie.


During The Great Migration of the 1920s, a father's decision to move up north to better his family's livelihood doesn't go as planned. This decision forever changes the course of his lineage as they grow through several decades in American History; from post Great Depression of the 1940s to the Black Power Movement of the 1970s to the sampled sounds of the 1990s Hip Hop until now. Through family, love and sacrifice you see the evolution of a family through the society and the systemic oppression they had to endure. But in the face of it all, they did one thing...survive. Music Direction by Khiyon Hursey

Keenan Scott II (Playwright; he/him) is an actor, playwright, director, and producer of original work. His work has been produced at Howard University, Gala Hispanic Theatre, National Black Theater, and the NYC Fringe Festival. Keenan's critically acclaimed piece Thoughts of a Colored Man has been workshopped and developed at The Arena Stage and the historic New York Theatre Workshop for private readings. The play had its World Premiere at Syracuse Stage for their 2019-2020 season and transferred to Baltimore Center Stage to finish its regional run. He has also been commissioned for several pieces including being a part of the PLAY AT HOME series curated by Baltimore Center Stage, Long Wharf Theatre, The Public Theater, The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis, and Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company.


M is a devoted Latinx sanitation worker, grappling with the decision to transition and facing the end of their relationship with their live-in girlfriend. All the while, the "epitome of trans* masculinity" provides comfort and chaos in dream and song. Mr. San Man is an exploration of gender and love, at home and in the workplace. What roles do we play in the lives of our friends, colleagues, and loved ones, and how and when do they surprise us-for better and worse?

CHRISTINA QUINTANA (CQ) (Playwright; she/her/any) is a writer with Cuban and Louisiana roots. Her plays and musicals, including Azul (Southern Rep), Citizen Scientist (Second Prize, Barrington Stage Company's Burman New Play Award), Scissoring (INTAR, and available via Dramatists Play Service), and Evensong (Astoria Performing Arts Center), among others, have been produced across and the country, and she is the recipient of fellowships and residencies from WP Theater, MacDowell, Queer/Art, Playwrights Realm, and Lambda Literary, among others. She served as staff writer on the ABC series The Baker and the Beauty and is at work on a new musical commissioned by Black Cap Productions based on Lives in Limbo: Undocumented and Coming of Age in America by Roberto G. Gonzales.

TAMPONS, DEAD DOGS & OTHER DISPOSABLE THINGS (A story about tampons, dead dogs, and what it means to survive)

Tampons, Dead Dogs, and Other Disposable Things is the story of Jen, a nervous woman and mother with a deep sense of humor and deep wounds. After years of therapy that failed to help Jen move on from trauma, she sets off on a backpacking trip in the mountains to give her the space and quiet she needs to silence her demons. But Joe, Jen's travel companion with whom she shares a loaded history, keeps getting in the way, and as their path moves further and further away from safety, we learn that everything is not what it seems. Shairi's play is a funny, searing, shocking story about the journey to self-discovery and strength in the wake of sexual violence -- presented in a small, little package. The package in this case being a tampon. Directed by Lucie Tiberghien

SHAIRI ENGLE (Playwright; she/her) is a playwright based out of San Diego. She's a founding member of the Veteran's Playwriting Workshop at La Jolla Playhouse and a writing and performance coach for So Say We All, a literary non-profit helping people tell their true stories. Tony Kushner selected Shairi as the 2019 Arts in the Armed Forces Bridge Award recipient. Most recently, Shairi was commissioned by The Old Globe in collaboration with Diversionary Theatre to write short plays for San Diego's Virtual 2020 Pride Festival.

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