Tomorrow’s February

And if it’s February, it means I’m writing a new play. Ack!

Yep, yep. I’m so grateful to Jennifer Haley & my fellow Playwrights Union playwrights for kicking off PU’s Annual Writing Challenge, wherein I and other members who are crazy enough write a play (or something that somewhat resembles a someday play 😉 ) in a (short!) month, then see what we’ve got and whip drafts into shape for our First Peek Reading Festival a few months later.

With lead dramaturg Alicia Tyler, producer Terence Anthony and fellow playwrights Makeda Declet, Nayna Agrawal and Chloe Hung –  dinner and cocktails to start the MADlab process

Uh huh. I kind of want to go back to bed just thinking about it, except that the Challenge has kicked my ass to write a new full length every year (almost) since we began in 2010.  And last year, it started me on the really amazing path of Footprint.

In 2017, I was lucky enough to have been supported in the development of this play by some incredible artists and organizations. I was thrilled to learn in January that I was one of four (female) playwrights selected for Moving Arts MADlab, which meant that I would get support for my as-yet-unwritten play throughout the year. And I got to take my first steps through the National Winter Playwright’s Retreat in Creede, Colorado. Hooray!

At the end of February, our mad read-a-thon weekend of 7 plays with amazing fellow playwrights (and actors including Abigail Marks & Peter James Smith) revealed so much to me; I was then able to tap into MADlab artists including dramaturg Elyse Griffin, producer Terence Anthony and Moving Arts’ Darin Anthony & Cece Tio as well as the other wonderful MADlab writers to move my play further along. Just the start of many, many #lucky playwright moments in 2017!

with Caroline Whitney Smith, Doug Sutherland & Laura Stribling

 

I was way, over-the-top excited to work with director Laura Stribling (totally strong armed her into this, but she’s still speaking to me!), who helped me assemble a team of phenomenal actors – including Rebecca Gray, Tania Verafield & Doug Sutherland – for the PU First Peek reading in June.

Then back to MADlab for workshopping, first with Arianna Ortiz, then Caroline Whitney Smith stepping into the lead role of Anna, and Scott Krinksy joining the cast as… the body. (Casting is everything.)

 

And as we rehearsed (and I re-wrote) and neared the date of the MADlab First Look Readings in October, we were over the moon to bring in Liza Fernandez as Anna.

Liza Fernandez & Tania Verafield

Cast of FOOTPRINT after MADlab First Look

 

I can’t thank all of the artists who helped me along the way, adored friends and colleagues who truly made their mark on Footprint.

Fingers crossed for the next phase of its journey – wherever that may be!

Oh, and wish me luck on my next play, please? It’s called Into the Gobpile. (Don’t ask. Okay, ask: but please wait until the February’s over?)

Thanks to Sara Wagner for these HOT graphics!

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