All great plays must be written.
And for the past ten years, Nashville Repertory Theatre has been asking, “how can we help?” to up-and-coming playwrights through its nationally renowned new play development program, The Ingram New Works Project.
To mark a decade of sharpening the scribes of tomorrow, the Rep has announced the diverse voices that will make up its upcoming 2019-20 season.
Through a highly competitive national search, playwrights Jeesun Choi, Gina Femia, Morgan Gould, and Haygen-Brice Walker were selected to spend the year with Nashville Rep creating brand new plays for the American stage.
“Over the past ten years, the Ingram New Works Project has transformed Nashville into a place where new art can thrive,” says Nate Eppler, director of the Ingram New Works Project and the Rep’s playwright in-residence. “Jeesun, Gina, Morgan, and Haygen-Brice are extraordinary artists and I’m thrilled to be able to bring them to Nashville to share their stories – by amplifying their voices, we continue to enrich and inspire our community.”
The project was created in 2009 with the support of co-founder Martha R. Ingram to provide an opportunity for theatre artists to develop new theatre works. Since then, it has supported the development of over 60 new plays for the stage that have gone on to development, awards, and production across the United States.
So without further ado, let us introduce you to the Rep’s next round of writers:
Jeesun Choi is a transnational Korean playwright and physical theatre artist. Her plays move through diaspora, (im)migration and transnationalism to reveal the joy and agony of the human condition. She is the 2019-20 Playwriting Fellow at New York Theatre Workshop. She was a fellow at National Institute for Directing & Ensemble Creation at Pangea World Theater. Her plays include:
Gina Femia has written 33 full-length plays which have been developed/produced by Page 73, Playwrights Horizons, Ensemble Studio Theatre, Center Theatre Group, New Georges, Powerhouse, Theatre of NOTE, Great Plains Theatre Conference and Project Y, among others. She is a 2019-2022 Core Writer with the Playwrights Center, and a current member of Page 73’s Interstate 73. She’s an alum of EST Youngblood, Pipeline Theatre’s PlayLab and New Georges’ Audrey Residency. Her play, Allond(r)a, is included on the 2019 Kilroys List and she is the winner of the Leah Ryan Prize and Doric Wilson Award.
Morgan Gould is a writer/director and recent graduate of Juilliard’s Lila Acheson Wallace Playwriting Fellowship. She’s a member of New Dramatists, EST, and a Yaddo and MacDowell Colony Fellow. As a director she has directed productions at P73, EST, Humana, Marin Theatre Company, Primary Stages, the Hangar, HERE Arts Center and Ars Nova. She is the artistic director of Morgan Gould & Friends – her own company with 13 other actors/designers/producers. Her plays include:
Haygen-Brice Walker is a Puerto Rican-American playwright-creative producer born and raised in the American South and currently making weird art in Philadelphia. Co-Founder and Creative Producer of On the Rocks. Haygen-Brice is an Affiliated Writer with The Playwrights’ Center (2018-19 Jerome Many Voices Fellow). His work has been described as if Streetcar Named Desire, Mean Girls, Texas Chainsaw Massacre, and Beloved got trashed at a Buffalo Wild Wings happy hour and then stumbled into the neighborhood bathhouse while belting the soundtrack of In The Heights. Each day, Haygen-Brice is one step closer to becoming Jennifer Lopez – which is trite for a gay Puerto Rican – but he’s embracing the cliché and living in his truth.
The four playwrights will visit Nashville monthly to work with Eppler and other key Rep staff who provide tailor-made developmental support and radical hospitality throughout the year. The project culminates in the 2020 Ingram New Works Festival, May 11-16, featuring the premiere public reading of all the new plays developed during the residency.
Sarah Ruhl – Becky Nurse of Salem
Lindsay Joelle – The Messengers
Dean Poynor – The Second Avenue Subway
Riti Sachdeva – Welcome to the Taj Palace (motel)
R. Eric Thomas – Crying on Television
Nate Eppler – This Red Planet
James Anthony Tyler – Pranayama
Christina Florencia Castro – The Very Last Wishes of Grandpa Joe
Tori Keenan-Zelt – How the Baby Died
Christopher Durang – Harriet and Other Horrible People
Nate Eppler – Primary User
Gabrielle Reisman – Pattern Seeking Animals
Stacy Osei-Kuffour – Big Nose
Andrew Rosendorf – Mermaid
Rebecca Gilman – Rocket Science
Jonathan Alexandratos – We See What Happen
Kyle John Schmidt – The Secretary
Edith Freni – This is About You
Helen Banner – Thrill Day
Donald Margulies – Long Lost
Nate Eppler – The Ice Treatment
Tori Keenan-Zelt – Air Space
Gabrielle Sinclair – Showing
Bianca Sams – Simply Bless
Doug Wright – Posterity
Nate Eppler – Good Monsters
Jeremy Sony – Pathogenesis
Andrew Kramer – Cut It Out
Dean Poynor – Together We Are Making a Poem in Honor of Life
Theresa Rebeck – Fever
Nate Eppler – The Future Mrs.
Garret Schneider – Ultrasound
Brian Walker – The Friend Factory
Jennifer Blackmer – Unraveled
Steven Dietz – Rancho Mirage
Nate Eppler – Larries
Kenley Smith – Empires of Eternal Void
Andrew Kramer – Crying for Lions
Michael Erickson – Honor Student
John Patrick Shanley – Storefront Church
Nate Eppler – City of the Dead
Heidi Ervin – The Hobo and The Housecat
Lisa Soland – Hand on the Plough
Joe Giordano – She’s Dead
Christine Mather – Horns of Elfland
Mary McCallum – Hunger in Paradise
Shawn Knight – Henson
David Auburn – The Columnist
Valerie Hart – Love Out Loud
McAdoo Greer – Titty Bars
Nate Eppler – Long Way Down
Dianie Di Ianni – Table
Matthew Carlton – Blessed Event
Ross Brooks – Supernova
Claudia Barnett – No 231 DeGraw Street
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