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Updated Lineup Announced For Bay Area Playwrights Festival

The festival runs July 16-25.

Playwrights Foundation has announced a change in its lineup of plays for this summer's 44th annual Bay Area Playwrights Festival. At the request of the playwright, Jaisey Bates' Real Time remix will replace the previously announced play when we breathe in the event to be held July 16-25, 2021 with ten streaming readings of five bold new works. Real Time remix is a new selection of short works in which four storytellers crisscross paths across dimensions as they seek to survive the weight of white words and thrive. For more information, the public may visit playwrightsfoundation.org.

Bates is among five bold, multi-award-winning playwrights to receive readings for their work in the 2021 BAPF. The Festival also includes Miyoko Conley's Human Museum, a wildly imaginative drama depicting a future where a human museum is curated by robots; Kaela Mei-Shing Garvin's Tiger Beat, a coming of age story about pop stardom in the 2000s; Sam Hamashima's Supposed Home, a time-bending anime adventure investigating the lasting effects of the Japanese American Concentration Camps; and Johnny G. Lloyd's The Problem with Magic, Is, a magical exploration of family, gentrification, and a spell gone wrong.

The acclaimed festival is scheduled to stream online, providing the opportunity for audiences around the globe to experience exhilarating new work by emerging theater artists. Bay Area Playwrights Festival runs July 16-25, 2021.The public may purchase streaming access on a sliding scale for individual readings ($5-20) or an All Access Festival Pass ($25-175). This pass includes access to all festival readings as well as an invitation to all events including two in-person gatherings, one per festival weekend. Streaming tickets and more information are available at playwrightsfoundation.org or by calling 415-626-2176.

Bay Area Playwrights Festival is one of the nation's oldest and most successful new play development programs. Now led by Executive Artistic Director Jessica Bird Beza, the Festival was established in 1976 by acclaimed director Robert Woodruff, and has built a stellar reputation for discovering original and distinctive new voices in the theater, investing in the development of their work, and launching storied careers. Among the first writers developed at the inaugural BAPF was the young Sam Shepard. Since then, more than 500 prize-winning, nationally significant playwrights have received their first professional experience at the BAPF. Among the American theater's brightest voices who are alumni of the festival are Pulitzer Prize winners Sam Shepard, Katori Hall, Nilo Cruz, Jackie Sibblies Drury, Paula Vogel, and Annie Baker; MacArthur Award winner Anna Deavere Smith; Tony Award winner David Henry Hwang; and acclaimed playwrights Lauren Gunderson, Rajiv Joseph, Christopher Chen, Lauren Yee, and Marcus Gardley. The BAPF's ongoing success in supporting exceptional, newly emerging writers and launching their groundbreaking new work is its enduring legacy.

The Festival lineup is as follows:

Real Time remix

By Jaisey Bates
Co-directed by Jeanette Harrison and Nailah Harper-Malveaux
Dramaturgy by David Geary
5:30pm PDT Saturday, July 17 · 11:30am PDT Sunday, July 25

In Real Time remix, four storytellers crisscross paths across dimensions as they journey through this new selection of short works where words are alive and every breath is a riot of beauty, a revolutionary act of courage grit grace faith fire. In a mortally wounded world rapidly running out of time, how can we find ways to survive? To heal ourselves, our words, and our worlds, and to, together, thrive?

Jaisey Bates (they/she) creates nontraditional collaborative work with their multicultural nomadic theater company, The Peoplehood. While East Coast born and mostly grown, they are currently West Coast based in the traditional ancestral and unceded lands of the Tongva, Tataviam and Chumash (aka Los Angeles). Bates is a recipient of the Emerging American Playwright Prize (Marin Theatre Company) and a finalist (Princess Grace Award, O'Neill National Playwrights Conference and American Blues Theater Blue Ink Award), semifinalist (American Shakespeare Center New Contemporaries), and honorable mention (Kilroy's list). Recent virtual productions include collaborations with WP Theater, SameBoat (EarthQuake Festival), and Honor Roll in association with the African American Policy Forum, National Action Network and The Breath Project. Recent development opportunities include virtual workshops with Clamour Theatre Company, Cutting Ball Theater, and The Vagrancy's Writers Group and Blossoming Festival, and selection for Native Voices at the Autry's Festival of New Plays.

Human Museum

By Miyoko Conley
Directed by Bob Shryock
Dramaturgy by Divinia Shorter
11:30am PDT Sunday, July 18 · 5:30pm PDT Saturday, July 24


Set in a future where humans have gone extinct, Human Museum follows a group of robots on Earth that run a museum dedicated to organizing the physical and digital artifacts of human life. On the centenary of human extinction, an unexpected radio call upends everything the robots thought they knew about the last days of humanity.

Miyoko Conley (she/her) is an Asian American playwright, games writer, and scholar based in the San Francisco Bay Area. Her plays have been presented in the Bay Area and New York City, including at the University of California, Berkeley; University of California, Los Angeles; (2g) Second Generation; The Tank; The Wild Project; and New York University. Past works include Starship Dance Party (developed with the New Play Reading series at UC Berkeley); End of the World Place (2015 semi-finalist Bay Area Playwrights Festival); Untitled Fantasy (part of 2g's Jumpstart Commissions); and Interchangeable Parts (part of 2g's Free Range Commissions). As a games writer, she is a current mentee in the UK-based Talespinners Mentorship Programme. Conley holds a BFA from New York University's Tisch School of the Arts and an MA from NYU's Gallatin School of Individualized Study. She is currently receiving a PhD in Performance Studies and New Media from the University of California, Berkeley.

Tiger Beat

By Kaela Mei-Shing Garvin
Directed by Jessica Holt
Dramaturgy by Natalia Duong
11:30am PDT Saturday, July 17 · 5:30pm PDT Friday, July 23

Tiger Beat follows the Girls Next Door, a pop girl group rising to fame in the early 2000's. The group's Asian American songwriter Tess finally gets a chance to sing lead, but the opportunity comes at what cost? This play with music is a coming of age story about pop stardom, 2003 fashion choices, and the pursuit of artistry on one's own terms.

Kaela Mei-Shing Garvin (they/she) is a writer, producer, performer, and educator. Originally from Mountain View, CA, with stints in Indiana and New York, Garvin is a founding member of Undiscovered Countries, a Brooklyn-based incubator of new interdisciplinary art. Garvin is a 2020 Bay Area Playwrights Festival finalist, a 2021 Seven Devils Conference and Kendeda Playwriting Award finalist, and the recipient of six Kennedy Center awards, including the Mark Twain Comic Playwriting Award and Paul Stephen Lim Playwriting Awards. Their plays have been developed with The Alliance Theater, Montana Repertory Theater, and College of the Holy Cross, and have been produced in New York at venues including Dixon Place, the New Ohio, and Ars Nova. Their work examines the spaces where privilege and oppression overlap through humor, history, and pop culture. Garvin currently teaches playwriting at Cornish College of the Arts. They received their MFA from Indiana University and BFA from NYU.

Supposed Home

By Sam Hamashima
Directed by May Liang
Dramaturgy by Miranda Cornell
5:30pm PDT Sunday, July 18 · 11:30am PDT Saturday, July 24

Shiyo left the Japanese American Concentration Camps a long time ago...or so she thought. Past and present become one landscape for this anime adventure as enemies are revealed, companions are found, trauma is unpacked, and what was only thought becomes (un)spoken word.

Sam Hamashima (them+) is an artist based in unceded Lenape Land known as New York City. Hamashima also holds space for the Tuscarora whose Lands, including North Carolina, nurtured them and their artistic voice. Hamashima's work ranges from script to visual poetry with an emphasis on empowerment, change, and healing. Their works include American Spies and Other Homegrown Fables (The Hub Theatre, Winner of the 2018 Kennedy Center Undergraduate Playwrights' Award, University of Michigan Hopwood Award in Drama) and Supposed Home (Seattle Public Theater, Finalist - Seven Devils Playwrights Conference). They are the second recipient of Seattle Public Theatre's Emerald Prize and are currently under commission from Lexington Children's Theatre.

The Problem with Magic, Is

By Johnny G. Lloyd
Directed by Leigh Rondon-Davis
Dramaturgy by Adrena Williams
5:30pm Friday, July 16 · 5:30pm PDT Sunday, July 25

After the death of their mother, Jodie goes back home to help her brother, Clarence, run the family magic shop. As the pressure to keep the business alive grows, they find themselves dealing not only with loss and new responsibility but also the forces of gentrification - and - a snake deity conjured from a spell gone wrong.

Johnny G. Lloyd (he/him) is a New York-based writer and producer. Recent productions include Or, An Astronaut Play (Co-Production, InVersion Theatre & The Tank and Round (Samuel French Off-Off Broadway Short Play Festival). Other recent plays include love is hard and absolutely (probably) worth it. His work has been seen and developed at Second Stage Theater, 59E59, Dixon Place, Judson Memorial Church, JAGFest (White River Junction, VT), TheatreLab (Boca Raton, FL), and more. As a writer, Lloyd has collaborated with companies such as Theater in Quarantine and Salon Séance. Lloyd is a member of the 2020-2021 Clubbed Thumb Early-Career Writers Group and was previously a member of the 2019-2020 Liberation Theatre Company's Writing Residency. Lloyd was a semi-finalist for the 2018 Open-Application Commission at Clubbed Thumb and a finalist for the 2020 Columbia@Roundabout Reading Series. He is the Director of Artistic Development at The Tank and Producing Director for InVersion Theatre.



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