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Dialogue and the Voice in Theatrical Writing with R. Eric Thomas

640 433 Play Penn

Dialogue builds the universe for our plays

From the rat-a-tat of witty banter to page-long dramatic monologues to moments of silence that hang in the air like fog, dialogue builds the universe for our plays. In this two-day intensive, we’ll pull clear takeaways from well-known examples, try our hands at various methods, and have a chance to revise dialogue from pieces of our own.

April 11 and 12: 1-5pm

Online (via Zoom)

R. Eric Thomas won the 2016 Barrymore Award for Best New Play and the 2018 Dramatist Guild Lanford Wilson Award and was a finalist for the 2017 Steinberg/ATCA New Play Award. He is the recipient of a 2017/2018 National New Play Network Commission and has also been commissioned or produced by the Arden, Simpatico, Azuka Theater, Single Carrot Theater, About Face Theater, City Theater Miami, Act II Playhouse and more.  He has two books coming in 2020: his debut memoir-in-essays, HERE FOR IT (Ballantine Books/February) and RECLAIMING HER TIME (Dey Street/Fall), a biography of Rep. Maxine Waters. Recent productions include SAFE SPACE, MRS HARRISON (Barrymore nomination – Best New Play), and TIME IS ON OUR SIDE. He is an alumnus of The Foundry, the Lambda Literary Fellowship, and the Ingram New Works Project.  Website:,  New Play Exchange profile here.



Register Here

Click the link below to visit our Reservation Page, where you can view all classes and register for this course. For questions or to inquire about payment plans, please email

When you register for a PlayPenn class before March 1, 2020 you’ll be invited to submit your unproduced, full-length play for consideration for a professional staged reading. PlayPenn will produce one student’s play as a reading with a professional director, professional actors and a PlayPenn dramaturg in Philadelphia in summer 2020. Only plays that have not had a professional production or reading will be considered. If you register for a class by the deadline, additional details will be emailed to you along with a submission form.

PlayPenn classes always get me over the hump and to a completed work.

-2019 Student

I walked away with an arsenal of guidelines for what makes a high-concept play, but also with half a notebook full of fantastic off-the-cuff breakthroughs and exercises.

-Danielle B., 2019 Student