The Cozy Reading Series!

Hello Friends and Supporters of NOplays!

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We’re proud to announce the Cozy Play Reading Series! Every Thursday and Sunday at 7pm we’ll read a new play by an emerging writer.

Live-streams will be available here.

If you have a play you’d like to submit to be read, email cozyreadingsubmissions@gmail.com.

Unfortunately, we don’t have any funding right now, but any donations we receive will be shared with the playwright who’s work is being featured that night.

This series will be on going until……ehhh?

Donate here if you can and would like to support our work!

Coronavirus Update

Dear Friends and Supporters of NOplays,

You may have noticed the unusual amount of silence coming from this blog, especially this time of year when we are normally in the mist of our annual HERSTORY Festival of new works by emerging female writers. After much careful thinking, I had decided to take a step away from NOplays for this year to focus on other projects. This decision did not come lightly, as NOplays has been a major part of my life for the past five years.

For better or worse, life had other plans. Like so many of you my livelihood was upended by the recent coronavirus outbreak. So I’m taking a step back into NOplays to help the community in whatever way I can and to continue using this platform to promote underrepresented artists, which we need now more than ever! NOplays will be creating theatrical experiences again, this time online. We’ll be doing our first virtual reading this Friday at 7pm, you’ll be able to find the link to the live-stream here.

OTHER RESOURCES FOR ARTISTS!

For promoting your work online:

The Stay at Home Festival has a calendar of events you can submit to.

The Social Distancing Festival is also taking submissions.

For financial aid:

Here’s a great list of resources posted by WomenArts.

New York Foundation for the Arts also has a list of emergency grants NOT JUST FOR NYC RESIDENTS.

Ko-Fi is similar to Patreon, but it’s free, you can sign up and leave a virtual tip jar with all of the art you post online.

Take care of yourselves. Stay safe. Wash your hands. Feel free to reach out if you need anything at all. Know that you are not alone.

Sincerely,

Natalie Osborne

 

Ladies First May

LADIES FIRST is a list of new productions, workshops, readings, and publications by female playwrights. Our goal is to create greater gender parity in theatre by highlighting the works of female writers and the organizations that promote and produce their works.

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May 1st and 2nd –  Dori Levit in association with The Tank presents
You Are Not Alone, a festival of short plays centered around the
anguish, stigma and difficulties of coping with mental illness.

Directed by Dori Levit
Assistant Directed by Sydney Wilson
Written works by Allie Costa, Rachael Carnes, Remington Moses, Joe
Starzyk, Joshua Crone, Maggie Wilson, and Eric Walkuski

Set and Lights by Jacob Prince
Stage managed by Natalie Streiter

Featuring Sydney Wilson, Jacob Saxton, Emily DeSotelle, Judith
Feingold, Alexander Chilton, Jason Sofge, Jaelyn Gavin, Andre Vauthey,
Kenneth Weinstein, Damien Palacios, Barbara Kinter, Valerie Donaldson,
Alexandra Sabina, and Howard Margulies

Proceeds go to the organization Active Minds

Tickets: https://you-are-not-alone.brownpapertickets.com/

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Uncle John and The Men’s Room
by Maxine Kern#
Directed by Lynn Marie Macy
With Jane Rubinsky & Susan Skosko
Inspired by Hoboken Station by Philip Seltzer

Josie Divine

by Coni Ciongoli Koepfinger#

Directed by Glenora Blackshire
With Beth Griffith
Inspired by Energy Shadows by Liz Amadio#

The One & Only Amanda Palmer
by Kat Mustatea#
Directed by Katherine Elliot#
With Kendra Augustin, Cheryl Bear & Katherine Elliot
Inspired by Victim Impact Statement by Melanie Barksdale

An AEA Showcase production of:
Guardian of the Field
by Liz Amadio#
Directed by Shellen Lubin+#
With Amy Fulgham* & Lori Sinclair Minor*
(and Kendra Augustin, Cheryl Bear & Katherine Elliot)
Inspired by Birds by Carol Martinez

*Members: Actors Equity Association
+ Member: SDC
#LPTW members

Cindi Cericola – Art Curation Advisor
Jonah Farley – Video Artist
Joe Izen – Composer
Jak Prince – Lighting Designer
Art Opening – Thursday 5/09/19 @ 6PM

with 8 Theatrical Performances:

Thursday, 5/09 – Saturday, 5/11 @ 8PM

Sunday, 5/12 @ 3PM

Thursday, 5/16 – Saturday, 5/18 @ 8PM

Sunday, 5/19 @ 3PM

Link for tickets: https://www.artful.ly/cosmicorchid-vdp4-0

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May 10th-19th Eden Prairie Players presents the Women’s One Acts
Festival. Come prepared for laughs and tears as we celebrate women in
theater!  Featuring:

Between Dollywood and Disney
by Robin Rice
directed by Taryn Verley

STAN: Mike Reardon
SUSIE: Kisten Thompson

Exceeding The Purchasable Calories
by Rhea MacCallum
directed by Kayla Hambek

WOMAN: Jen Cordes
MANAGER: Wendy Hathaway
CLERK: Christy Jones

Back Cover
by Emily Hageman
directed by Lori Alsdurf

MADISON NOW: Amanda Johnson
MADISON THEN: Reese Johnson
JESSICA: Samantha King
MOM: Tedra Bonner
DAD: Steven Ramirez
FATHER: David Durkee
MR. LEE: Mike Reardon
MATT: Sergio Aguado Drake
KATIE/ALYSSA: Kylie Borchardt
KATIE/ALYSSA: Caitlin Warshaw

Creating: The Enticing Esmeralda
by Tabitha Kerr
directed by Tabitha Kerr and Kelly Rohde

BEA: Shelley Wolf
ESMERALDA: Morgan Gray
JULIAN: Steven Ramirez
SURPRISE GUEST(S): David Durkee

Who She Could Have Been
by Allie Costa
directed by Elizabeth Michaelson

RHYS: Chris Maresca
SIMI: Jenny Robinson

The Morning Menage
by Tracey Jane
directed by Jessica Passaro

DAWN: Sher Unruh-Friesen
ALARM CLOCK: Ankita Ashrit
BED: Andrew Scipioni
COFFEE: Tim Williams

Tickets: https://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/epp/4216249

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May 18th-26th Ixion Theatre Ensemble presents Hope, a festival of
eight plays selected from over two hundred submissions. Each offers a
unique take on what it means to have hope. At the helm of this
production is Rose Jangmi Cooper, making her directorial debut.

The eight scripts being performed are:

Hijab by Andrea Clardy
Low Light by Allie Costa
Be More 282 by Rich Espey
Winter in the House by Lauren Ferebee
Scripted by Mark Harvey Levine
172 Push-Ups by Scott Mullen
Classics for Kids by Ellen Sullivan
One, Three, Two by Michael Weems

The performers will be: Sadonna Croff, Jacquelyn Marks, Leo
Poroshin,Paul J Schmidt, Ellen Weise, Lekeathon Wilson and Muthu
Jayatissa.

Tickets:
https://www.eventbrite.com/e/hope-a-collection-of-short-plays-tickets-60574917208

To submit to the June issue of LADIES FIRST, email natalie.noplays@gmail.com before the end of the month. Send us your name, the name of your play, the name of the theatre producing your work, a sentence or two about the play, the where and when, and an image. Thank you to everyone who participated in this month’s LADIES FIRST newsletter.

THANK YOU!

Thank you to everyone who came out and supported this years Best of HERSTORY at the New Haven Free Public Library!

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Thank you also to The Arts Council of Greater New Haven for writing this fantastic article on HERSTORY! If you missed the show or if you just want to remember a great afternoon, you can read the article right here.

 

HERSTORY SATURDAY!

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The Best of HERSTORY Festival is only a few hours away! Please join us this Saturday at 3:30pm, at the New Haven Free Public Library, one show only!

To learn more about this years HERSTORY and NOplays Theatre, check out this interview with Artistic Director Natalie Osborne:

 

 

 

 

 

Allie Costa Discusses Her New Play and Speaking Up

Allie Costa’s new play A Moment of Silence was originally featured in the HERSTORY 2: WE RISE Festival in 2017. It was one of the plays selected for a revival in the Best of HERSTORY Festival 2019. In this interview with Artistic Director Natalie Osborne, Allie Costa discusses Leelah Alcorn, LGBT representation, and what we as theatre-makers can and should do to raise our voices. You can see this play, along with the other winners, on March 28th at 6:30pm and March 30th at 3:30pm at the New Haven Free Public Library. 

Trigger Warning: Suicide, Abuse, and Misgendering

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1.) How long have you been with 365 Women a Year?

I have been involved with 365 Women a Year since the first year, 2014. I connected with Jess Eisenberg on Twitter, and when she spoke of collecting new plays about historical women, I immediately threw my hat in the ring. I have contributed plays to 365 Women a Year every year.

2.) Has your approach to writing about these historical women changed at all?

Whether it’s for stage or screen, I approach each new script in a similar way: stubbornly and honestly. Stubbornly because 99% of the time, I have to think of the ending before I start typing. Before I start typing, yes, but not necessarily before I start scribbling; I still like to write scenes/drafts longhand, and I often scribble down ideas and snatches of dialogue in my notebook and on scratch paper. And honestly because I intend to communicate the truth of the characters and the story.

When I am writing something inspired by real people and real events, I do a great deal of research. I want to honor the person’s real life and experiences. In many of my 365 Women a Year plays, I have incorporated quotes, things that were said or written by the women.

3.) Can you tell me more about the inspiration behind A Moment of Silence?

A Moment of Silence was inspired by Leelah Alcorn. Leelah was 17 years old when she took her own life in December 2014. She posted a suicide note on Tumblr which went viral. Leelah was a transgender girl whose parents refused to accept her identity and her chosen name. In her note, Leelah expressed, “The only way I will rest in peace is if one day transgender people aren’t treated the way I was, they’re treated like humans, with valid feelings and human rights. Gender needs to be taught about in schools, the earlier the better. My death needs to mean something. My death needs to be counted in the number of transgender people who commit suicide this year. I want someone to look at that number and say ‘that’s *&^%ed up’ and fix it. Fix society. Please.”

Leelah’s suicide note was subsequently removed by her parents, but is accessible via the Wayback Machine: https://web.archive.org/web/20150101052635/http://lazerprincess.tumblr.com/post/106447705738/suicide-note It was also shared by City Councilamn Chris Seelbach: https://www.facebook.com/ChrisSeelbach/posts/10152890372978559:0

4.) What was a big challenge for you while you were writing this play?

I decided early on that I would base the story on what I had learned about Leelah, but I named the main character Hailey in order to allow myself to fictionalize some things, to fill in the blanks and create a similar story without feeling as if anything I wrote was false or disrespectful.

5.) Why do you think it’s important for people to hear stories about the LGBT community now?

Love is love is love. The current political climate certainly means we need to keep fighting for inclusion for all, for not only tolerance but true understanding, for open-mindedness and acceptance.

Leelah felt like she was not being heard. In death, more people know her story than ever did while she was alive. That is heartbreaking.

6.) What do you think we as artists can do given the current challenges faced by the LGBT community?

Speak up. Speak out. Support others. Include others. For example, if you are an artistic director or producer who realizes your entire season is programmed with heteronormative stories, make an effort to consider and include scripts that have LGBTQ characters. If you are a writer, add LGBTQ characters to your next script. The same can be said for producing/writing scripts that feature minorities and characters who have disabilities, and stories with an equal number of male and female roles (or more female roles, or all female roles!) Do not write stereotypes. Write something real. Create and find new works that reflect the world’s true population and situations. Use your art and your heart to give voice to people who feel like they have been silenced, who feel like they have to be silent.

7.) What would you like the audience to walk away with after watching this play?

I hope it moves them, and that they make positive moves: “Give me emotion into action,” as Sara Bareilles says in her song Parking Lot.

I hope people will reach out to those they know who might be in a similar situation and offer them their support. Having someone listen to you, having a shoulder to cry on, can make a world of difference.

8.) What 365 plays are you working on now? 

This year, I’ll be writing plays about Margarita “Peggy” Schuyler Van Rensselaer; author Zilpha Keatley Snyder; and singer/songwriter Sara Bareilles.

9.) Are there any other thoughts or pieces of advice you have for your fellow writers or the theatre community at large? 

Keep writing.
Keep sharing.
Keep listening.
Keep showing up.
Keep speaking up.

If you would like to make a donation to support the project and win some awesome prizes, click here! All money goes to support the artists in the Festival. We need to raise another $250 before the 30th, and you can help!