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Studio Theatre Awards Largest Number Of Commissions In Its History


Building on over 40 years of producing powerful contemporary theatre, Studio Theatre is pleased to announce its largest class ever of commissioned artists to Studio R&D, its incubator to support the creation of new work.

Studio will award grants to 10 artists-playwrights, directors, and multidisciplinary creators-investing in its future while supporting theatre-makers and expanding the idea of what it means to be a generative artist. For the first time, Studio R&D commissions are being awarded to support the creation of audio plays, as Studio explores alternate modes of theatrical storytelling in response to the present moment.

The latest individuals to join Studio R&D are: (creating audio plays) Anne Washburn, Staceyann Chin, David Cale, and Ike Holter; (directing) Marti Lyons; (creating new theatrical works) Liliana Padilla, Steph Paul, Erika Dickerson-Despenza, Kimberly Belflower, and Brittany K. Allen. Padilla and Paul will work collaboratively on a joint project.

"With the pandemic shuttering theaters around the country, two things seemed clear: There are great artists who have lost work. And many of these artists have time on their hands. So, we've expanded our commissioning class this year, welcoming nine writers and a director to our commissioned artists," said Studio's Artistic Director David Muse. "We've also expanded the kind of work we're commissioning, inviting four very different writers to create audio plays in a Studio vein-we believe that they'll meet the opportunity of the form in surprising ways. And for all of us, it's important to keep creating work for the future, work inflected by the lives we're living now, so it will be there for us when we can convene in person again."

Muse introduced the Studio R&D commissioning program in 2012, inviting new and established writers to develop work for the theatre's intimate spaces. Past commissions include: Stew and Heidi Rodewald, Vivienne Franzmann, Rachel Bonds, Clare Lizzimore, Mary Elizabeth Hamilton, Ike Holter, Aaron Posner, Sarah DeLappe, Abe Koogler, Qui Nguyen, Steph Del Rosso, Adam Bock, Emily Schwend, James Ijames, and James Fritz. In 2016, Studio began extending commissions to directors, which have included Lileana Blain-Cruz, Mike Donahue, and Jackson Gay.

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