Monthly Archives :

    May 2018

    SALT PEPPER KETCHUP by Josh Wilder

    150 150 Play Penn

    Playwright Josh Wilder

    PlayPenn is pleased to host a public reading of a new work by Philadelphia playwright, Josh Wilder.

    When:

    Monday, June 4th at 7pm

    Where:

    The Drake Proscenium Theatre, 302 S Hicks St, Philadelphia, PA 19102

     

    Salt Pepper Ketchup

    by Josh Wilder

    Director: Jerrell L. Henderson

    Dramaturg: Michele Volansky

    Stage Manager: Tom Shotkin

     

    A layer of bulletproof glass won’t protect Superstar Chinese Take-Out owners from the gentrification consuming the Point Breeze neighborhood in South Philly. When a trendy food co-op opens nearby, the Wu’s and their customers initially see it as a hipster annoyance, but as tensions mount they begin to recognize the intrusion as an act of war. Tinged with genuine humor and pathos, Wilder’s play examines the very human consequences of neighborhood redevelopment — who benefits and who gets chewed up and spit out?

     

    This reading is free and open to the public.  

     

    Questions? Contact email@playpenn.org

    Josh Wilder is a playwright from Philadelphia. His work has been developed at various theaters and festivals across the country including The Fire This Time Festival, New York Theatre Workshop, The Drama League, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, 2015 O’Neill National Playwrights Conference, and Milwaukee Rep. His play LEFTOVERS was the recipient of the Holland New Voices Award at The Great Plains Theatre Conference, and will be premiering this season at Company One Theatre in Boston. Recent commissions include, LOVE’S LABOUR’S LOST for Play On! at Oregon Shakespeare Festival; and SHE A GEM for The Kennedy Center. Josh is a former Jerome Fellow and Many Voices Fellow at The Playwrights’ Center; has been in residence at The Royal Court Theatre; Sundance at UCross; and currently serves as Co-Artistic Director at The Yale Cabaret. Josh is a graduating MFA candidate in Playwriting at Yale School of Drama.

    One-Person Show Intensive

    150 150 Play Penn

    With Nilaja Sun. Popular Returning Class! Open to students who have worked with Sun on their show and wish to continue, or students who are working with her for the first time

    Obie award winning Nilaja Sun returns to Classes at PlayPenn with her specialized intensive designed to facilitate returning students, who are working on their own solo pieces. Students will continue to craft their pieces while finding dynamic ways to perform their stories, unique to each student’s strengths. Students will also continue to work on discovering how their bodies, voices and life experiences can set their solo pieces apart from others. Be ready to move, laugh, cry, feel and inspire. The world needs your story!

    July 14 and July 15, 1pm-5pm

    Philadelphia Young Playwrights Learning Lab

    1219 Vine Street, Floor 2

    Philadelphia, PA 19107

    Bring up to 12 minutes of your solo show with you.

    Nilaja Sun is the solo performer and writer of the Off-Broadway smashes No Child… and her new show, Pike Street. For her creation and performance of No Child… and its subsequent national tour, Nilaja garnered 21 awards including: an Obie Award, a Helen Hayes Award a Lucille Lortel Award, and two Outer Critics Circle Awards including the John Gassner Playwriting Award for Outstanding New American Play. Theatre credits also include The Commons of Pensacola, Einstein’s Gift, Time and The Conways, Huck and Holden, and The Cook. Tv/Film credits include Madam Secretary, Louie, 30 Rock, Law & Order: SVU, Unforgettable, The International, and Rubicon. As a solo performer, her projects include the critically acclaimed Blues for a Gray Sun (INTAR), La Nubia Latina, Black and Blue, Insufficient Fare, Due to the Tragic Events of…, and Mixtures. Nilaja was awarded the soloNOVA Award for Artist of the Year by terraNOVA Collective and was recently awarded a NYSCHA grant. A native of the Lower East Side, she is a Princess Grace Award winner and has worked as a teaching artist in New York City for over 15 years.

    $250

    Tuition

    Register Here

    As class begins shortly, please email classes@playpenn.org

    “I have travelled from the Harrisburg area for several PlayPenn workshops. Well worth my travel time and the cost of a train ticket!”

    -Cindy D, 2018 Student

    “PlayPenn classes inspire me to write more, and help build my confidence in my writing ability.”

    -Mark, 2017 Student

    Writing Lyrics for Musical Theatre with Michael Hollinger

    640 433 Play Penn

    Playwrights and songwriters of all experience levels welcome!

    Musical theatre is one of the most challenging – and rewarding – types of dramatic writing, with more moving parts and collaborators than any other form. In this hands-on workshop, playwrights and songwriters will develop their skills as lyricists, from the macro (song plots, types, and structures) to the micro (prosody, meter, rhyme). Students will explore how sung text relates to spoken dialogue, how character is revealed through words and music, and how songs can advance, rather than stop, the narrative. Assignments and in-class exercises complement a shared inquiry into the many jobs theatre songs must accomplish – among them, simply delighting the ear.

    July 11, July 17, & July 24 from 6pm-9pm

    The Bluver Theater at The Drake, 302 S. Hicks Street, Philadelphia, PA

    Reading: Craig Lucas’ Reckless. If you do not have a copy of this play please email PlayPenn Education (classes@playpenn.org) and we can help you find one.

    Michael Hollinger is a playwright, lyricist and composer, the author of hundreds of songs and over a dozen plays and musicals, including TouchTones (with composer Robert Maggio), Opus, Incorruptible, Red Herring, An Empty Plate in the Café du Grand Boeuf, Cyrano (co-adapted with Aaron Posner), and A Wonderful Noise (with Vance Lehmkuhl), among others. These works have been produced around the country, in New York City, and abroad. Michael is the recipient of four Barrymore Awards, an ATCA/Steinberg New Play Citation, an L.A. Drama Critics Circle Award, a Mid-Atlantic Emmy, nominations for Lucille Lortel and John Gassner awards, and multiple fellowships from the Independence Foundation and Pennsylvania Council on the Arts.  He is a Professor of Theatre at Villanova University, a proud alumnus of New Dramatists and PlayPenn, and (with Jacqueline Goldfinger and Quinn Eli) co-founder of The Foundry, a core program of PlayPenn.

    $250

    Tuition

    Register Here

    Online registration has been closed. If you would like to sign up, please email classes@playpenn.org.

    “PlayPenn is a wonderful organization that works on providing resources and knowledge for playwrights and dramatists in the Philadelphia area. It really is a great organization that focuses on bringing like-minded people together to ironically think differently in order to bring out creativity and individualism. It’s a wonderful organization that I’ve just gotten into in the past half year, and plan to stick with for the unforeseeable future.”

    -Devin, 2018 Student

    “Gave me an instant cohort of writers to provide feedback, encouragement and inspiration – I was hearing my own voice, and it was great.”

    – Ross, 2017 Student

    Writing from Inside and Outside of Your Play with Winter Miller

    1024 730 Play Penn

    Perfect for writers of all experience levels!

    Writing strong characters with authentic dialogue is a craft, but it begins with being able to listen and observe, repeat and hone. Generally, we are our own biggest obstacles—fear of not knowing, fear of being wrong, fear of committing to something. It’s important to write as intimately and specifically as you can, just as it is useful to write as epically and universally as you desire. It’s a tightrope. It’s an inside job. You can come at it from the outside in or the inside out. But the secret is, you need both paths. We will do a mix of writing prompts and reading aloud. You will leave this workshop with a firm grasp of what and whom you’re writing about and what your next steps are.

    July 7, 9am-Noon EST

    July 8, 3-6pm EST

    July 9, 6-9pm EST

    July 10, 6-9pm EST

    Online. We will use www.zoom.us and a link will be emailed to you prior to class. You must have a working internet connection.

    Come in with a photograph of someone you don’t know but something about them compels you and you want to write about them. Could be a photograph with two people in it; come in with a line from a poem that speaks to you; come in with an obituary you read that made you wonder, what was that person like? If you have it, come with the story you want to tell, and if you don’t, let’s find it and you’ll begin it.

    Winter Miller is an award-winning playwright and founding member of the Obie-recognized collective 13 Playwrights. She is best known for her drama IN DARFUR which premiered at The Public Theater. IN DARFUR won the “Two-Headed Challenge” commission from the Guthrie Theatre and the Playwrights Center. Winter traveled with her former boss, New York Times Pulitzer-winning columnist Nicholas Kristof to the Sudan border to research on the ground. IN DARFUR has been produced in Chicago, Washington, D.C., Atlanta, Florida, Massachusetts and Canada. Her plays include NO ONE IS FORGOTTEN (Kilroys Hon Mention, 2016, The Magic Theatre’s Playwrights Week 2016, Salt Lake Acting Company Playlab 2017), SPARE RIB (Relentless Awards Hon Mention 2016, Kilroys Hon Mention 2015, Civilians R&D), LOOK AT US (The Cherry Lane), and IN DARFUR (The Public Theater and regional prods at TimeLine, WAM, Theatre J, Horizon, The Landing, THE PENETRATION PLAY (Dir. Josh Hecht, 13P, NYC). Her work has been supported by NYFA Artist 2016, The Civilians R&D Lab 2015, The Lark 2014, Playwrights Center Core Writer Residency 2011-2014, and fellowships from Sundance Institute, Hedgebrook, The Cherry Lane, the Lark, Orchard Project, Space on Ryder Farm, New York Theatre Workshop Monday @3 and Blue Mountain Center. She is a New Georges Affiliated Artist. A playwriting instructor and mentor, Ms. Miller leads Weekend Warrior Intensives and Series Six workshops. Adjunct Professor at The New School MFA, SUNY Purchase B.A., Primary Stages ESPA, Visiting Lecturer Princeton, New York Theatre Workshop’s Mind the Gap, Girl Be Heard, Sundance Institute, Stella Adler Outreach, Arts Connection TRaC (2x finalist President’s Coming Up Taller Award) and worked with youth in refugee camps in Northern Uganda and Palestine. She has made plays with marginalized youth, HOME/AWAY (Theatre Askew) and CONSPICUOUS (Keen Company).

    $200

    Tuition

    Register Here

    To register, please email us ASAP as the class begins shortly. Email: classes@playpenn.org

    “An unbelievable environment of support and encouragement. Continuously encouraged growth of any idea that was presented in the class.”

    -Tom, 2018 Student

    “I was impressed with the diversity of age, race, and professional backgrounds of the people in my class. It made for a rich experience.”

    -Aisha, 2017 Student

    Finding the Path in the Forest of Facts: Writing Research-Driven Plays with Tira Palmquist

    640 480 Play Penn

    Perfect for writers with some experience writing either short or full length plays!

    Writing about “hot-button” sociological, political, or scientific issues can provide a lot of fodder for a dramatic piece – but how do you avoid having your research overwhelm your play or avoid having your play sound like a lecture? This class will cover how to use research well so that the research becomes dramatically necessary, or better yet, so that the research becomes the dramatic engine of the play. We’ll discuss how to do research, when to stop researching, and how to find that exciting point where aesthetics and information collide. In addition to discussing the general principles of finding the poetry and promise of more scientific subjects, we’ll also look at samples of plays that do this well. Finally, you’ll have an opportunity to workshop some scenes rooted in your own research, and then to develop a plan for a longer process.

    August 2 and August 9, 6-8pm EST

    Online. We will use www.zoom.us and a link will be emailed to you prior to class. You must have a working internet connection.

    Ideally, students will have a topic and some research done before the first session.

    TIRA PALMQUIST’s plays include The Way North, Overburden, Two Degrees (Denver Center), And Then They Fell (MadLab Theater, Brimmer Street), Ten Mile Lake (Serenbe Playhouse), Age of Bees (MadLab Theater, Tesseract) and This Floating World. Two Degrees premiered in the Denver Center’s 2016/17 Season and was listed in the 2016 Kilroys Honorable Mention List. Ten Mile Lake was a finalist for the 2015 Primus Prize. She has been a director, dramaturg and playwright at Seven Devils Playwrights Conference and the New Territories Playwriting Residency, a program she developed with Brian Clowdus at Serenbe Playhouse. More info at www.tirapalmquist.com.

    $85

    Tuition

    Register Here

    Click the link below to visit our Reservation Page, where you can view all our course offerings and register for a slot in this class.

    For questions or to inquire about payment plans, please email classes@playpenn.org.

    “When you leave a PlayPenn class, your brain is so full of ideas and new tools, and your heart is full from this new network of collaborators you have just met. Old ideas are revived by the teachers, the tools, and the people in the room. I always leave the class ready to work.”

    -Jamie, 2017 Student

    “An unbelievable environment of support and encouragement. Continuously encouraged growth of any idea that was presented in the class.”

    -Tom, 2018 Student
    John Yearley

    Playwriting for Playgoers with John Yearley

    1024 1024 Play Penn

    Perfect for theater lovers and artists of all experience levels!

    Any theatregoer can tell you about a play they saw that they’ll never forget. But how much do even lifelong theatregoers know about the art of playwriting itself? Playwriting for Playgoers will mix the educational and the experiential so that students will really understand the practice and experience of playwriting. First, we will read and discuss a great play, breaking down how and why it works so well. Then we will do exercises to explore how you write for plays, how you write in the voice of other characters and create conflicts that reveal their deepest truths. After taking Playwriting for Playgoers, you will never look at a play the same way again.

    July 16 and July 25, 6:30pm-9:30pm

    The Bluver Theater at The Drake, 302 S. Hicks Street, Philadelphia, PA

    Reading: Please read The Glass Menagerie by Tennessee Williams in advance of class.

    John Yearley

    John Yearley is the author of The Unrepeatable Moment (Barrow Group), Leap (Kaplan New American Play Prize, Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park), Antigone (adaptation, Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park), Ephemera (Gassner Award, Summer Play Festival), and Another Girl (PlayPenn, Naked Angels). His plays All in Little Pieces and A Low-Lying Fog are published by Samuel French. He is currently writing for the PBS Kids show Arthur and worked as a script doctor for New Line Cinema. He’s a member of the Writer’s Guild of America, the Dramatists Guild, and twice a MacDowell Fellow. He holds a MFA in Playwriting from Temple University.

    $125

    Tuition

    Register Here

    This course begins shortly. Please email classes@playpenn.org to register.

    “PlayPenn is a wonderful organization that works on providing resources and knowledge for playwrights and dramatists in the Philadelphia area. It really is a great organization that focuses on bringing like-minded people together to ironically think differently in order to bring out creativity and individualism. It’s a wonderful organization that I’ve just gotten into in the past half year, and plan to stick with for the unforeseeable future.”

    -Devin, 2018 Student

    “PlayPenn classes inspire me to write more, and help build my confidence in my writing ability.”

    -Mark, 2017 Student

    Agents, Agency, and Ack! How Do I Get My Plays Produced?

    640 480 Play Penn

    Cocktails and Real Talk with NYC Agent Beth Blickers

    Beth Blickers has over 20 years experience as an agent for playwrights, composers, directors and choreographers in New York City. She is currently an agent at APA (formerly of William Morris Agency and Abrams Artists Agency) and a national advocate for playwrights. She will sit down with Jacqueline Goldfinger to talk a little bit about agenting, how you know it’s the right time to approach an agent, and what to say when you do. Then we will have a moderated 45-minute Q&A following by an hour networking mixer where participants have a chance to chat with Beth and also with each other to meet collaborators who will help forward your work.

    July 12, 2018 from 6pm-8pm

    The private room at Fergie’s Pub, 1214 Sansom Street, Philadelphia, PA 19107. The downstairs bar will be open beforehand, during and after. You are welcome to bring your food and drink upstairs with you for the event.

    Beth Blickers is currently an agent at APA, where she represents writers, composers, directors and choreographers for theatre, television and film. She began her career at the William Morris Agency, where she began work after graduating from New York University. She has served on the jury panel for the Weissberger Award, the Ed Kleban Award, the Lark’s PONY Fellowship, participated in the Non-Traditional Casting Project, Inc.’s roundtable on inclusion and diversity in the theatre, and has presented workshops and sessions on agenting, playwriting, directors and choreographers and related topics for organizations such as the Society of Directors and Choreographers Foundation, the Dramatists Guild, Musical Theatre Works, the Lark, New York University, the National Alliance for Musical Theatre and the Texas Education Theatre Association. She is a Past President and Board member of LMDA, and is proud to be the board chair emeritus of Theatre Breaking Through Barriers, a New York company that works with artists with disabilities.

    $50

    Tuition

    Register Here

    Click the link below to visit our Reservation Page, where you can view all our course offerings and register for a slot in this class.

    For questions or to inquire about payment plans, please email classes@playpenn.org.

    “I have travelled from the Harrisburg area for several PlayPenn workshops. Well worth my travel time and the cost of a train ticket!”

    -Cindy D, 2018 Student

    “PlayPenn classes inspire me to write more, and help build my confidence in my writing ability.”

    -Mark, 2017 Student