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Vickie Ramirez Wins the 2020 Smith Prize for Political Theater

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Vickie Ramirez Wins the 2020 Smith Prize for Political Theater

National New Play Network, the country's alliance of professional theaters that collaborate in innovative ways to develop, produce, and extend the life of new plays, announces the winner of the 2020 Smith Prize for Political Theater: Vickie Ramirez.

"The Smith Prize for Political Theater is a program that has been urgent and necessary since its inception," said NNPN Executive Director Nan Barnett. "The resonance and vision that Vickie's project will contribute to the American theater is especially vital at this time. We are thrilled to welcome her and her work into the Network."

Elisa Blandford, the Managing Producer of Native Voices at the Autry, the NNPN Member Theater that nominated Ramirez for the prize, said: "Vickie demands audience exploration of what it means not only to be American, but also to be human in a society that was ravaged by the atrocities of colonialization and the separation of Indigenous communities from mainstream culture. She poses challenging, political, and divisive questions - questions with no one clear answer, allowing for continued audience dialogue when the play ends."


Ramirez is the 15th recipient of the Smith Prize for Political Theater, established in 2006 by Timothy Jay Smith and a group of socially conscious donors to encourage emerging playwrights to tackle the pressing issues of our times.


Vickie Ramirez (Tuscarora) is a founding member of Chukalokoli Native Theater Ensemble and Amerinda Theater. She is also an alumna of The Public Theater's Emerging Writers Group (2009) and is currently in residence at New Dramatists. Her work has been developed at The Public Theater, Labyrinth Theater, Roundabout Theatre's Different Voices, The Missoula Writer's Colony, and BLACK SWAN at Oregon Shakespeare Festival. She has been a semi-finalist for the Bay Area Playwright's conference and the National Playwright's Conference at the O'Neill. Honors include 2009 Urban Artists' Fellowship and Honorable Mentions on the Kilroy's List in 2015 for Standoff at Hwy#37 and in 2019 for Pure Native. Productions - Pure Native for Native Voices at the Autry (2019), Glenburn 12 WP for Summer Shorts at 59E59, Smoke for Mixed Phoenix Theatre Group at Pershing Square Signature Center, Liimikin at New Native Theater and Standoff at Hwy#37 for Native Voices at the Autry in Los Angeles and South Dakota. Her work has been published in Monologues for Actors of Color: Women and Monologues for Actors of Color: Men (Routledge). Standoff at Hwy#37 is featured in the all-new Contemporary Plays by Women of Color (Routledge). Vickie is currently consulting on Outer Range for Amazon television and also developing Not Invisible: Native Womxn on the Frontlines, a podcast celebrating the work of Native Female/Female-identifying activists that are leading the fight for change. You can read her work in Monologues for Actors of Color: Women (2016), Monologues for Actors of Color Men, and Contemporary Plays by Women of Color (2017). Member: Dramatists Guild


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