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Melis Aker

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Melis Aker BIO

Melis Aker is a writer, actor, and musician from Turkey. Her plays have been commissioned by and developed at Atlantic Theatre, Ars Nova (Play Group member), NYTW (2050 fellow), New Group, Dramatists Guild Foundation (DGF Fellow), Roundabout Space Jam, LaMaMa, The Lark, The Flea, Noor, Golden Thread Productions, 24 Hour Plays, Corkscrew Festival and BRIC in the U.S., as well as the Finborough and Park theatres in London.

Melis’ plays include: Field, Awakening (2019 Kilroy’s List, Columbia@Roundabout finalist, Sundance final-round, Berkeley Rep Ground Floor final-round, Playwrights Realm finalist); Dragonflies (2019 Sundance final-round); Scraps and Things (Playing on Air, starring Carol Kane); Azul (O’Neill NMTC); When My Mama was a Hittite (Columbia@Roundabout finalist); Fractio Panis (Homebound Project/No Kid Hungry, starring Brian Cox); Manar (Columbia@Roundabout finalist, Theatre503 Playwriting Award semifinalist); 330 Pegasus: A Love Letter (Jerome NY Fellowship final-round); OPET Diaries; and Gilded Isle. Her screenplay “ARI” (“Bee”) was at the 2019 Cannes Film Festival as part of Maison des Scenaristes, and her pilot of “MANAR” was accepted to Orchard Project’s Episodic Lab, Trans Atlantic Partners, and IFP week. She has also worked on the development of a screenplay with Revelations Entertainment, headed by Lori McCreary and Morgan Freeman.

Selected acting credits include: “The Blacklist: Redemption” (NBC), “Seneca” (HBOMax), Love in Afghanistan (Arena Stage & Roundabout), We Live in Cairo (NAMT, New World Stages), Proof (Edinburgh Fringe). Her song “The Unknowing” was in the final reel of the 2017 NPR Tiny Desk contest. Melis has worked as Ayad Akhtar’s assistant, and given a StoryCorps and TEDx talk. She is a proud member of The Lark’s Middle East America writers room.

Upcoming: Melis is developing a musical play with Benjamin Scheuer and Jemma Williams based on their illustrated book Hundred Feet Tall, and working on a new play commission from Ars Nova. Her play Field, Awakening will receive its world premiere at the Finborough Theatre directed by Rory McGregor (covid-19 pending). Training: Columbia (MFA), Tufts (BA), RADA (Acting). Representation: CAA and Brillstein Entertainment Partners.

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Melis Aker News

Signature Theatre Opens Submissions for The Judith Champion Musical Theater LaunchPad Residency

Signature Theatre has opened submissions for the Judith Champion Musical Theater LaunchPad Residency. Lear more about the Residency!

Mandy Gonzalez, Katerina McCrimmon, David Merino, Martin Sola & More Set For Industry Reading Of New Musical AZUL

Supported by The Miranda Family, Latiné Musical Theatre Lab will be hosting an internal industry table reading of the musical AZUL, in August 1st, as part of the Lab's Table Reading Series.

World Premiere Of Benjamin Scheuer's A MOUNTAIN FOR ELODIE Set For Edinburgh Fringe 2023

Creative Partners Productions and Aria Entertainment will present the World Premiere of A MOUNTAIN FOR ELODIE by internationally renowned musician Benjamin Scheuer at the 2023 Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

New York Theatre Workshop Reveals 2050 Fellows, New Company-in-Residence and Artistic Department Expansion

New York Theatre Workshop has announced the artists selected for the 2023/24 Season 2050 Artistic Fellowship.

Interview: Tatiana Pandiani of TORERA at Alley Theatre

Last year, during the Alley All New Festival, upon the announcement of Law & Order's Monet Hurst-Mendoza having a workshop was news that caused for myself much excitement. The workshop was not a disappointment but made me anxious to witness a full scale production. When it was announced in the 22-23 Alley Theatre season, my excitement grew not only due to the capability of a full scale production, but also the fact that Director and Choreographer, Tatiana Pandiani, would be at the helm.

Ana Villafañe, Joel Perez & More to Star In AZUL: A Bilingual Musical At Joe's Pub

JOE'S PUB at The Public Theater will present Katerina McCrimmon (The Rose Tattoo), Robi Hager (Spring Awakening), Ana Villafañe (On Your Feet!), Joel Perez (Fun Home), Martin Sola (The King and I, On Your Feet!), Henry Gainza (On Your Feet!), Florencia Cuenca, & More in AZUL: A Bilingual Musical!

World Premiere of Branden Jacobs-Jenkins' THE COMEUPPANCE to be Presented at Signature Theatre

Signature Theatre will present the world premiere of MacArthur Fellow Branden Jacobs-Jenkins’s The Comeuppance, directed by Eric Ting.

Storm Large, Ute Lemper, and More to Play 54 Below Next Week

Next week, 54 BELOW, Broadway's Supper Club & Private Event Destination, presents some of the brightest stars from Broadway, cabaret, jazz, and beyond. A recipient of the 2022 Tony Awards Honor for Excellence in the Theatre, 54 Below celebrates Broadway musicals and writers of the past and present, promoting an ongoing engagement with their work.

Donna McKechnie, Taylor Iman Jones & More to Perform at 54 Below in March

Next month, 54 BELOW will present some of the brightest stars from Broadway, cabaret, jazz, and beyond.

Mandy Gonzalez, Robin De Jesús, and More Set For AZUL EP Release Concert at 54 Below

54 BELOW, Broadway's Supper Club, presents Mandy Gonzalez (In The Heights, Wicked, Hamilton), Tony Award nominee Robin de Jesús (In the Heights, La Cage aux Folles, The Boys in the Band) Katerina McCrimmon (The Rose Tattoo), Robi Hager (Spring Awakening), and more in the AZUL EP Release Concert.

Mandy Gonzalez, Robin De Jesús, Katerina McCrimmon, Robi Hager & More To Star In AZUL EP Release Concert At 54 Below

54 BELOW, Broadway's Supper Club, presents Mandy Gonzalez (In The Heights, Wicked, Hamilton), Tony Award nominee Robin de Jesús (In the Heights, La Cage aux Folles, The Boys in the Band) Katerina McCrimmon (The Rose Tattoo), Robi Hager (Spring Awakening) & More in the AZUL EP Release Concert.

Joriah Kwamé, Beth Malone & More to Join 11th Annual Johnny Mercer Foundation Writers Grove at Goodspeed Musicals 

Now celebrating its 11th anniversary, Goodspeed Musicals has announced the participants for the annual Johnny Mercer Foundation Writers Grove at Goodspeed Musicals which will be held January 31 - February 27 on the Goodspeed campus in East Haddam, Connecticut.

See Linda Eder, Hugh Panaro, a Celebration of WAITRESS' Jennas & More at 54 Below This Month

This month, 54 BELOW will present some of the brightest stars from Broadway, cabaret, jazz, and beyond. See Linda Eder, Hugh Panaro, a celebration of the Jennas of Waitress and more. See the full month's programming here!

New York Theatre Barn Will Present The Musicals De Mañana At 54 Below In Celebration Of Hispanic Heritage Month

In celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month, New York Theatre Barn will present The Musicals de Mañana, a concert featuring songs from some of the most thrilling and influential Latiné musical theatre writers on the rise. The live and in-person concert will be presented at 54 Below (254 W. 54th St., NYC) on Thursday, October 6th, 2022 at 9:30PM. The concert will also be streamed live. 

Signature Theatre Names Melis Aker Inaugural LaunchPad Resident Playwright

Signature Theatre has announced its first-ever LaunchPad Resident—playwright, actor, and musician Melis Aker—inaugurating the new program that supports diverse early-career playwrights and expands the organization’s singular mission of producing a body of work by each resident writer.

Ars Nova and PlayCo Present World Premiere of Melis Aker's HOUND DOG in October

Ars Nova and PlayCo will present the world premiere of HOUND DOG by 2019 Ars Nova resident artist Melis Aker. Directed by Machel Ross with music by Aker and the Lazours, this cross-cultural jam-session-meets-play explores the winding path towards forgiveness and belonging.

Robin De Jesús Will Host Latiné Musical Theatre Lab's First Annual Benefit Concert

The Latiné Musical Theatre Lab, a new organization that develops and advocates for new Latiné-written works of musical theatre in order to radically change who gets to tell musical stories on stages across the country, is presenting its first ever Benefit Concert. 

PlayCo Announces Productions Through Fall 2023, Including the World Premiere of 9 KINDS OF SILENCE & More

PlayCo has announced its programming through 2023—three plays that, in radically disparate styles, offer generous and probing explorations of human connection across the complexities of geopolitics, cultural identity, and elaborate workplace lunches.

Ars Nova Announces 'Name Your Price' Tickets for 20th Anniversary Season

Ars Nova has announced details for its 20th Anniversary Season, which introduces the What’s Ars Is Yours: Name Your Price ticket initiative.

Eugene O'Neill Theater Center Welcomes New Musical AZUL To Campus For Development

Following its virtual development as a part of the 2020 Summer Season, the new musical Azul will receive an in-person developmental process on the Eugene O'Neill Theater Center campus this September.


Melis Aker has written 1 shows including Hound Dog (Playwright).

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