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22nd Annual New American Playwrights Project Set for Utah Shakespeare Festival, Now thru 8/29

22nd Annual New American Playwrights Project Set for Utah Shakespeare Festival, Now thru 8/29

The 22nd annual New American Playwrights Project (NAPP) takes the stage at the Utah Shakespeare Festival from today, August 8 through August 29. Three plays will be presented as staged readings in the Auditorium Theatre at 10 a.m. on selected dates. Chosen from hundreds of plays submitted, this year's lineup includes Six Seconds by Rose-Mary Harrington, Breakout by Dan Borengasser, and Hamlet's Shakespeare by Mary Jane Schaefer.

Tickets are $10 each and are on sale now at 1-800-PLAYTIX and

As an audience member, you will have the chance to see staged readings of these new pieces and then take part in a discussion with the playwright and Festival directors and actors.

Six Seconds presents the events surrounding the John F. Kennedy assassination through the vortex of the women caught in its awful grip: Lady Bird Johnson, Jackie Kennedy, Nellie Connally, and Marina Oswald. These women are not only wives, but mothers, and each has a unique perspective and reaction to the tragedy that occurred in Dealey Plaza. Six Seconds by Rose-Mary Harrington and directed by Charles Metten will be presented August 8, 9 and 27 at 10 a.m. in the Auditorium Theatre.

In Breakout, "Roach" Rhinowsky and Russell Sloan share a jail cell, but they don't agree on much. Then the prison adopts a theatre program as a form of rehabilitation, and the two concoct a shared goal. They decide the play the inmates will produce, Hamlet, will be the perfect distraction for a breakout. However, the show soon worms into their psyches, and they both discover that a 400-year-old play can still pack quite a wallop. Breakout by Dan Borengasser and directed by Quinn Mattfeld will be presented August 15,16, and 28 at 10 a.m. in the Auditorium Theatre.

Hamlet's Shakespeare has as its central focus the death of Hamnet Shakespeare, Will's only son, dead at the age of eleven. The play explores the significance of his death, in an imagined story of how Shakespeare wrote Hamlet, the best way the playwright could find to mourn his son. Hamlet's Shakespeare by Mary Jane Schaefer and directed by Henry Woronicz will be presented August 22, 23 and 29 at 10 a.m. in the Auditorium Theatre.

"The three shows this year are the best we have had in years," said Chuck Metten, director of NAPP. "All the plays are insightful, informative, powerful and very entertaining. These performances and post discussions are imperative for the writers to further develop and grow their work."

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