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Alexandra Espinoza

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Dramaturg

Alexandra Espinoza is a Philadelphia based theatre artist whose work aims to connect creative power to community voices. As a playwright, she is a first-year member of the Foundry at PlayPenn and her work has been produced by Power Street Theatre Company and Juniper Productions, and has been developed at Great Plains Theatre Conference and Seven Devils. She has worked as an actor, dramaturg, and director with Orbiter 3, Inis Nua Theatre, Azuka Theatre, and PlayPenn. She practices community engaged dramaturgy with Simpatico Theatre and has facilitated the creative expression of people aged 7 to 70 in her work as a teaching artist. She recently completed her Masters in Theatre at Villanova University, where she was the 2018 recipient of the Barbara Wall Award for Feminist Praxis for her performance as research work on introducing Brechtian aesthetics to Lynn Nottage’s Intimate Apparel.

Specialties: new work development; production and workshop dramaturgy; research processes; culturally specific dramaturgy, with particular interest in consulting with playwrights of color and members of other marginalized groups; projects that blend research and aesthetics.

Alix Rosenfeld

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Alix Rosenfeld is a dramaturg, writer, and theater-maker based in Philadelphia, PA. She graduated from Vassar College with a BA in Drama and then went on to earn her MA in Theatre from Villanova University. While there, she also dabbled in solo performance work, theatre of the oppressed, and adaptation studies. Prior to graduate school, she lived in New York City, where she acted as the literary manager for a small company, Random Access Theatre, that focused on reimagining the classics and on developing new plays that were inspired by classical texts. Since graduating from Villanova, Alix has been working with a lot of UK/Irish texts due to her dramaturgical work with Inis Nua Theatre Company, a Philadelphia company that specializes in contemporary works from England, Ireland, Scotland, and Wales. She also reads and judges each year for a number of companies that have new play development festivals, including Barrington Stage Company, Bay Area Play Festival and the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center. She has worked regionally and internationally with such companies as the Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM), the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center, and the Abbey Theatre in Dublin, Ireland. Recent collaborations include People’s Light, Delaware Shakespeare, and the Renegade Company.

Chelsea Phillips

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Chelsea Phillips (Dramaturg, 2018 Conference) is an Assistant Professor and Resident Dramaturg for Villanova University’s Department of Theatre. She is committed to supporting artists in the creation of compelling and urgent stories in any form and style. She enjoys plays big and small, and delights in exploring language, structure, and theatre’s ability to create community and connection. She has particular expertise in non-realism, devised work, adaptation, and pieces drawing on historical figures, styles, and events. Most recently, she worked with New Dramatist resident playwright J. Julian Christopher on his queer fabulist Bruise & Thorn at the 2018 PlayPenn National Conference, and with Whiting Award Winner Michael R. Jackson on his biting and hilarious 90’smusical satire, White Girl in Danger. At Villanova, she has helped develop and produce new works by Owen McCafferty, Douglas Carter Beane, Kathryn Petersen, Michael Hollinger, and James Ijames. Previously, she’s worked with Manhattan Shakespeare Project, the for/word company, Uncut Pages Theatre, and artists from the Royal Shakespeare Company, Folger Shakespeare Theatre, and the American Shakespeare Center. Chelsea received her MFA in Dramaturgy from Mary Baldwin University/The American Shakespeare Center, and a PhD from Ohio State University. She is currently writing a book about celebrity pregnancy on the eighteenth-century London stage. When not in the theatre, Chelsea is usually found spending time with her animals, baking, or crafting.

Sally Ollove

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Sally Ollove is a Philadelphia- and Seattle-based dramaturg and director. She is the Associate Artistic Director and Resident Dramaturg of the Bearded Ladies Cabaret in Philadelphia. Formerly the Literary Manager at Arden Theatre Company, Resident Dramaturg of Azuka Theatre, and the Programming Director of The Jewelbox Theater at the Rendezvous in Seattle. Other credits include TheatreExile, Philadelphia Theatre Company, and The Foundry (Philadelphia), ACT (Seattle), One Coast Collaboration, Frank Boyd & Libby King (On the Boards) among others. She has served as adjunct faculty at Rowan University, University of the Arts and Intiman’s Emerging Artist program. Sally is a graduate of the ART/MXAT Institute for Advanced Theatre Training at Harvard, a member of the 2011 Director’s Lab at Lincoln Center, and a 2016 recipient of the LMDA Bly Creative Capacity Fellowship.

Daniella Vinitski Mooney

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Daniella Vinitski Mooney is a peer-reviewed professional theatre artist and scholar with an emphasis in new play development, as well as experimental (site-specific, immersive, physical), feminist, and classical theatre styles.  She is a conservatory trained actress through the NYU Tisch School Experimental Theatre Wing and the Royal Academy in London, and teaches Acting at the University of Pennsylvania. As a playwright, Daniella’s work has been described as “lovely, lyrical, and thought-provoking” by Cambridge University Press, “compelling and exciting” by The Flea Theatre former resident director and founder of You Are Here, Lilleth Gimcher, and “resonant, a gem” by Jewish Plays Project Artistic Director David Winitsky.  Her work has been produced and professionally workshopped nationally, including through various American Theatre Wing-recognized companies. As a dramaturg, Daniella employs a detailed but question-based structure, with a focus on character and structure. She is a veteran dramaturg with the Philadelphia-branch “Drop In Office Hours Dramaturgy Project” and PlayPenn RAD program, as well as the nationally-ranked Colorado Shakespeare Festival. Daniella holds a PhD from the University of Colorado and has been published with or is in press with Routledge, Ecumenica, Theatre History Journal, Theatre Journal, Theatre Survey, and Bloomsbury, among others, with a primary focus on dramaturgy and performance.

Meghan McClain

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Megan McClain is a NYC-based dramaturg. As R&D Program Director at the Civilians, she’s guided the work of over 70 writers, composers, and directors creating original works of investigative theatre.  She is also the Resident Dramaturg for Superhero Clubhouse, an ensemble of artists and scientists devising plays at the intersection of ecology and performance. She’s developed new work presented during artist residencies at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Drama League, La MaMa, NACL Theatre, Catwalk Institute, and LMCC. Additional dramaturgy/literary work for: Goodman Theatre, Disney Theatrical, Hartford Stage, Playwrights Realm, The Lark, Target Margin, New Georges, and APT. M.F.A Dramaturgy: UMass Amherst.

Lavina Jadhwani

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Lavina Jadhwani is a theatre director, adaptor, and activist. She creates work that is well-crafted, rigorously researched, compassionately curated, and radically inclusive. As a second generation immigrant, Lavina constantly investigates the question, “What does it mean to be an American?” and through her work, she strives to expand the definition of that word to include more minority voices. Lavina’s directing credits include work at Actors Theatre of Louisville, American Conservatory Theater, Asolo Repertory Theatre, Guthrie Theater, Mixed Blood Theatre, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Remy Bumppo Theatre Company, Shakespeare & Company, Teatro Vista, Writers Theatre, and Rasaka Theatre Company (where she served as Artistic Director for 6 years). Her adaptations include The Sitayana (a solo performance piece based on the Hindu epic, The Ramayana), Vanya (adapted from Chekhov), and Shakuntala: An East-Meets-West Love Story (an a cappella musical, adapted from Kalidasa, featuring Bollywood/American pop mashups).

Proud graduate of The Theatre School at DePaul University (MFA, Directing), Carnegie Mellon University (BFA, Scenic Design; Masters, Arts Management) and the Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy.

Jamie Beckenstein

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Jamie Beckenstein is an oral historian, dramaturg, tarot reader, and writer based in Queens, NY. They have a BA from Hampshire College in documentary theater dramaturgy. Jamie got their start as an oral historian working in interview-based performance art, specifically concentrating on the embodiment of identities. They’ve been practicing oral history for eight years with projects ranging in scope from five to sixty interviews on topics including but not limited to trans elders’ experiences of rural areas, sex education via mainstream media, and straight men’s condom use. They have extensive knowledge of the early HIV/AIDS epidemic in New York, television history, sex education, manned space travel, and piracy. Jamie also reads tarot cards professionally and writes creative non-fiction.

Elizabeth Bennett

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Elizabeth Bennett is a dramaturg, arts journalist, and arts administrator living in New York City. As the resident dramaturg and literary manager at La Jolla Playhouse, Manhattan Theatre Club, Dallas Theater Center, Arena Stage, and Second Stage, she read hundreds of scripts each year, provided research and production dramaturgy, developed new plays, and managed humanities and education programs. Among the works she is proud to have developed are Jessica Hagedorn’s Dogeaters (directed by Michael Greif), David Grimm’s Sheridan (directed by Mark Brokaw), Chay Yew’s Wonderland (directed by Lisa Peterson) and Paul Weitz’s Privilege (directed by Peter Askin). Her work as a dramaturg for musical theater has included production dramaturgy on the pre-Broadway tryouts of John Caird’s Jane Eyre and Dick Scanlan’s Thoroughly Modern Millie; she also commissioned the Tony Award-winning musical Spring Awakening. Elizabeth holds an MFA from the Yale School of Drama and serves as a class agent for the school.