WILD ORCHIDS And ROSARY HILL By Heather J. Violanti To Debut 9/10-16 In TNC's Dream Up Fest

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Two short one-acts, "Wild Orchids" and "Rosary Hill" by Heather J. Violanti, will debut September 10 to 16 in a double bill presented by Theater for the New City's Dream Up Festival. "Wild Orchids" is a film noir-esque, feminist, and fictionalized take on 1940's Hollywood, where a secretary has a chance encounter with William Faulkner that may change both their lives. In "Rosary Hill," two gentle nuns tend to their garden in upstate New York but a closer look at the harsh Mother Superior reveals they may not be all that they seem. Both plays feature canny, nuanced female characters who have much more going on under the surface than meets the eye. Jennifer Sandella directs.

The cast will include Michael Gnat*, Autumn Mirassou, and Valerie O'Hara.

*Denotes Member, Actors' Equity Association. Michael Gnat is appearing courtesy Actors Equity Association. Wild Orchids/Rosary Hill is an Equity approved showcase.

Heather J. Violanti (Playwright) is a playwright and dramaturg. Her first play, "Aphra, Where Have You Behn?" won the Connecticut State division of the Clauder Competition. While living in England, she performed one of her monologues in Stratford Talking, part of the first annual Royal Shakespeare Company New Works Festival. She wrote the book for two original musicals, "A Rainbow Journey: The Harold Arlen Story" and "Victory," both produced at MusicalFare Theatre in Buffalo, New York. Her ten-minute mystery spoof, "The Bald Mousetrap," won Grand Prize in the ShowOff! Festival at the CaminoReal Playhouse and is published by Brooklyn Publishers. Another short play, "Fish Story," was performed at the Radium Girls' Radioactive Festival and is also published byBrooklyn Publishers. She is a member of the Writers' Group at the Greenhouse Ensemble and the BMI Librettists' Workshop.

Jennifer Sandella (Director) is a Brooklyn based theater artist with a foundation in classical text and performance. She is the Artistic Director for Random Access Theatre (www.randomaccesstheatre.com) and directs independent projects, including new works and musicals, in New York City. Recent directing projects include "Pinwheel! A New Musical" (Nomination: NYITA, Outstanding Production of a Musical), "Rosmersholm" (The Old Stone House/Random Access Theatre), "The Taming of the Shrew" (Brooklyn Bridge Park: Shakespeare at Sunset), "Save the Robots" (West VillageMusical Theatre Festival/NYMF), "Friends Scream for 2 Days" (2014 NYC DADA Festival) and "Reach" (Dream Up Festival, Theater for the New City). She is an associate member of the SDC and was a 2015 resident artist for The Drama League and a member of the Director's Lab West ('14). She holds a BFA from Hofstra University and a Masters degree from the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, London (Text and Performance/Directing Pathway). www.jennifersandella.com

The ninth annual Dream Up Festival (www.dreamupfestival.org) is being presented by Theater for the New City from August 26 to September 16. An ultimate new work festival, it is dedicated to the joy of discovering new authors and edgy, innovative performances. Audiences savor the excitement, awe, passion, challenge and intrigue of new plays from around the country and around the world. The festival does not seek out traditional scripts that are presented in a traditional way. It selects works that push new ideas to the forefront, challenge audience expectations and make us question our understanding of how art illuminates the world around us. In addition to traditional plays, a unique and varied selection of productions will again be offered, drawing upon a variety of performance genres including musicals, puppetry and movement theater. The Festival's founders, Crystal Field and Michael Scott-Price, feel this is especially needed in our present time of declining donations to the arts, grants not being awarded due to market conditions, and arts funding cuts on almost every level across the country and abroad.



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