Jersey City Theater Center Presents the 6th Annual New Play Festival: STRENGTH, May 5 - May 26

The month long festival, part of New Jersey Theatre Alliance's Stages Festival, features 10 new works from emerging playwrights.

By: Apr. 27, 2022
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Jersey City Theater Center Presents the 6th Annual New Play Festival: STRENGTH, May 5 - May 26

Jersey City Theater Center announces the 2022 New Play Festival beginning Thursday, May 5, 2022 through Thursday, May 26, 2022, with selected works centering on the theme of STRENGTH.

The festival begins with 5 short plays presented online, followed by 3 weeks of live performances (JCTC Studios, 165 Newark Ave, Jersey City), including 2 full-length plays. In total, the festival will showcase 10 new plays by 11 emerging playwrights who, together, represent the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Slovenia, and Romania. All events include a Q&A and discussion with the playwrights; admission is free with a suggested $25 donation.

Catalina Florina Florescu, Ph.D., of Pace University, New Play Festival curator, selected the 2022 works from over 160 submissions: Sometimes I Feel Like I'm Not Even Me by Camryn Chew (Canada, Vancouver, British Columbia); Ahavah by Dana Hall and David Lipschutz (United States, Chicago, IL); Lovers and Survivors by Aaron Leventman (United States, Santa Fe, NM); Unwrap Your Pain by Marj O'Neill-Butler (United States, Miami, FL); Woman with a Parasol by Molly Kirschner (United States, Montvale, NJ); A Universal Question by Kathleen Maule Holen (United States, Hays, KS); Two Lovers and a Bear by Tjas?a Ferme (Slovenia and United States, New York, NY); The Men from the Mechanical Age by Ioana Cosma (Pitesti, Arges, Romania); Unconventional by Kristin Cotts (United States, Washington, D.C.); and Little Did I Know, by Doc Andersen-Bloomfield (United Kingdom, Oxford and United States).

The New Play Festival is part of the New Jersey Theatre Alliance's Stages Festival, the state's largest annual theatre festival, which provides free and discounted theatre events for all ages throughout the months of March, April, and May.

"When [JCTC's executive producer] Olga Levina and I chose the theme of strength for our 2022 edition, we thought that that would fit well with our theater's core values, as well as what we want to see read and represented on our stage. Now the word's meaning resonates differently as we try to remain undefeated and provide as much and varied support as needed to Ukrainians. Both Olga and I lived under communism in Eastern Europe, and we know what it means to be told what to do, to be denied your own thinking, and ultimately to live a life that is not yours but placed on you forcefully. Speaking in my name exclusively, freedom must be secured constantly, and it should not be taken for granted," shares Catalina Florescu.

"We live in times of war and intense changes. How do we increase the emotional, mental, and physical capacity to withstand the great forth of the daily trauma and the external pressure of our rapidly changing world? What is the source of your strength? These were the questions on our minds as we approached this year's festival," says Levina. "We dedicate the entire edition of this festival to our Ukrainian friends, who have shown the world their strength, beauty, and resilience, and we pledge to help them in any ways that we can. There is strength in love, there is joy in being together, and there is reassurance that only united we can prevail over unspeakably hurtful times," Dr. Florescu adds.



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