Primary Stages Announces 2016 ESPA Drills Play Selections

Primary Stages announced today the selections for the 7th Annual ESPA Drills, a developmental play program that provides staged readings to four playwrights selected by blind submission, for scripts developed at Primary Stages ESPA. Presented by Primary Stages Einhorn School of Performing Arts (ESPA), the plays are workshopped under the guidance of the Primary Stages ESPA staff.

All readings are free and open to the public and will be held at The Lucille Lortel Theatre (121 Christopher Street) on Monday, August 15, and Tuesday, August 16, 2016.


By Mike Poblete

Directed by Carolyn Cantor

Assistant Director Blayze Teicher

Featuring Jeanette Bonner, Rachel Lin, Kristin Parker, Neil Tyrone Pritchard, and Michael McCorry Rose.

"A bit of advice: don't open with your botched suicide attempt on a first date."

Monday, August 15, 2016 at 4:00pm


By Daniel McCoy

Directed by Morgan Gould

Assistant Director Colton Pometta

Featuring Erin Healani Chung, Matthew Dunivan, and Ramon O. Torres.

"The end of the world's not what it used to be."

Monday, August 15, 2016 at 7:00pm


By Joshua Strauch

Directed by Gregg Wiggans

Assistant Director Rachael Harrington

Featuring Sonia Nam, Nairoby Otero, Frank Paiva, Vanessa Pereda-Felix, Steve Remeika, and Danielle Elizabeth Sacks.

"The telemarketing industry is dying... but so is humanity."

Tuesday, August 16, 2016 at 4:00pm


By Stephen Brown

Directed by Suzanne Agins

Assistant Director Ria T. DiLullo

Featuring Diana Cherkas, Talaura Harms, Brian Keane, Jessica Luck, Alfredo Narcisco, Brian Quijada, and Kara Young.

"When you don't have a license but you do have a vengeance, kidnapping country music singers is easier than you'd think."

Tuesday, August 16, 2016 at 8:00pm

Reservations for ESPA Drills readings are free and can be made by visiting

Primary Stages 2016/17 season will begin with THE ROADS TO HOME, written by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Horton Foote (Harrison, TX). Directed by Michael Wilson (The Trip to Bountiful), the cast will feature Devon Abner (The Orphans' Home Cycle) and HAllie Foote (Dividing the Estate). THE ROADS TO HOME begins previews Wednesday, September 14, 2016, and officially opens Wednesday, October 5, for a limited run through November 6, 2016. The season will continue with the New York premiere of FADE, written by Tanya Saracho (Mala Hierba) and directed by Jerry Ruiz (Basilica). FADE begins performances in January 2017 and will run through March 2017. The season will conclude with the New York Premiere of DANIEL'S HUSBAND, presented by Primary Stages & Ted Snowdon. Written by Michael McKeever (Moscow) and directed by Joe Brancato (Miracle on South Division Street), DANIEL'S HUSBAND will run from March-April 2017. Additional casting & creative team for both productions will be announced at a later date.

Single tickets for THE ROADS TO HOME, starting performances September 14, 2016, at the Cherry Lane Theatre, are priced at $70 and available at or by calling OvationTix at 212-352-3101. Group tickets are available for $45 per ticket ($35 for student groups) by contacting 212-840-9705. Subscriptions for the Primary Stages 2016/17 Season are on sale now for $135. Subscriptions include tickets to all three mainstage productions. All subscription packages can be purchased by visiting or by calling OvationTix at 212-352-3101.

The Primary Stages Einhorn School of Performing Arts (ESPA)'s multidisciplinary classes have trained playwrights, actors, and directors in all stages of their development and from all corners of the globe. Our focus is on nurturing, honoring, and advocating for emerging artists by providing them countless developmental opportunities, space to write and rehearse, and a family of collaborators. Students benefit from a kaleidoscope of perspectives and methods from our award-winning family of instructors-all working theater artists in NYC and around the country. Through building these connections and a body of work at ESPA, our playwrights have received workshops and productions, won awards, and garnered professional attention among artistic leaders across the country. Our actors and directors have built relationships that now extend far beyond our walls. Having provided a home for over 2,500 artists, ESPA has become a trailblazer in performing arts education, new play development, and collaboration within the Primary Stages and greater New York Theater community. ESPA is open to all artists, in all stages of their careers.

Primary Stages is an Off-Broadway not-for-profit theater company dedicated to inspiring, supporting, and sharing the art of playwriting. We operate on the strongly held belief that the future of American theater relies on nurturing playwrights and giving them the artistic support needed to create new work. Since our founding in 1984, we have produced more than 125 new plays, including Donald Margulies' The Model Apartment (1995 premiere and 2013 revival); David Ives' Lives of the Saints and All in the Timing (original 1993 production and 2013 revival); Billy Porter's While I Yet Live; Kate Fodor's Rx; Charles Busch's The Tribute Artist and Olive and the Bitter Herbs; A.R. Gurney's Black Tie; Horton Foote's Harrison, TX and Dividing the Estate (Two 2009 Tony Award nominations); Theresa Rebeck's Poor Behavior; Deborah Zoe Laufer's Informed Consent; Terrence McNally's Dedication or the Stuff of Dreams and The Stendhal Syndrome; Danai Gurira and Nikkole Salter's In the Continuum (which went on to tour the U.S., Africa, and Scotland); and Conor McPherson's St. Nicholas (which marked the playwright's U.S. debut). Our productions and artists have received critical acclaim, including Tony, Obie, Lortel, AUDELCO, Outer Critics' Circle, Drama League, and Drama Desk awards and nominations. Primary Stages supports playwrights and develops new works through commissions, workshops, readings, and our education and training programs: The Dorothy Strelsin New American Writers Group, the Marvin and Anne Einhorn School of Performing Arts (ESPA), the Fordham/Primary Stages MFA in Playwriting, and the newly launched Primary Stages Off-Broadway Oral History Project. Through these programs, Primary Stages advocates for our artists, helping them make important-and often transformative- connections within the theater community.

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