The Festival Line-up:
By Agyeiwaa Asante
For over 187 years Maybelle and Jimmy Dale have haunted the Mason plantation, a now popular tourist attraction and event venue. Tired of their time on this plane, they wonder what it'll take to get them to the other side.
Agyeiwaa Asante is a Ghanaian-American theatre artist based in Maryland. Her plays include Swirl (Kennedy Center’s Page-to-Stage Festival 2017; Watermelon One- Act Festival- Best Production 2019), Help Wanted (Silver Spring One Act Festival; Elemental Women Productions) and Dainty (BOLD NYC’s 2020 Festival). Most recently she was commissioned for UMD’s NextNow Festival and Single Carrot Theatre and is the 2020 recipient of The Bret Adams and Paul Reisch Foundation’s Ollie Award for emerging playwrights. She also works as a local dramaturg and assistant director. Agyeiwaa is the current Artistic Assistant at Round House Theatre and a member of D.C. Dramatists. B.A. in Theatre from the University of Maryland.
Red Red Wine
By Rachel Herron
Somm was well on her way to becoming the first Black female Master Sommelier in the world, but she gave it all up to produce her own wine label. Now she's enlisted the help of her mentee, Mel, to help grow the brand; the only question is will Mel still be on board once she learns the secret ingredient in their bestselling red?
Rachel Herron is a playwright, performer, and freelance editorial writer living in Harlem. She received her BFA from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, where she studied drama as well as dramatic writing. In 2019, she was a finalist for the CBS Writers Mentoring Program. Her satirical writing has been featured on McSweeney’s Internet Tendency while her freelance editorials have been published by TV Guide, Bustle, and Elite Daily. In 2020, she competed in the Fresh Fruit Festival’s Monologue Project, where she was awarded the audience favorite. She also participated in the virtual writer’s room for the Playdate Theatre Development Conference in Los Angeles.
Gurlfriend (Black is Black)
By Fedna Jacquet
Two black girls drinking wine and living their best lives. #BlackGurlMagic #UnapologeticAF. We get to see THEM--jokes and bruises on display. By leaving the world outside, these best friends are able to bond in a fresh and delightful way...but what happens when the ever-shrinking classification of blackness threatens to exclude one of them? We ride the bold and excruciatingly confusing rollercoaster of identity, friendship, and regret to a new destination unknown to both Lea and Tonya. #Drama
Fedna Jacquet was born in Boston to Haitian parents. She is a full-time writer and actor in NYC. She is a 2020-2022 National Black Theatre Playwright in Residence, 2019-2021 Huntington Theatre Playwriting Fellow, and a 2019 NYSCA/NYFA Artist Fellow in Playwriting/Screenwriting. Written work for the screen includes Isaiah (ABFF/TVOne Screenplay Competition Finalist), Homebase (Juilliard/NYU Grad Acting), Inheritance (2020 Tribeca Chanel Through Her Lens Finalist), Circus (2020 HollyShorts Quarterfinalist) and Going Home. Written plays include Pefeksyon (Playwright’s Realm Finalist; DVRF Finalist; Studio Tisch), Inheritance (Classical Theatre of Harlem Playwright's Playground; Studio Tisch), Civic Duty (Commissioned by SUNY Purchase), Gurlfriend (Black is Black) and Heroes (Developed as a Huntington Fellow). BA: Brown University MFA: NYU/Tisch Grad Acting.
Wookiees in The Wilderness
By Marcus Scott
Bishop and Smokey are best pals. Smokey will do anything for Bishop, who is in the midst of recovering from a recent trauma. Bishop will do anything for Smokey including go out to the mountainside wilderness of the Lake of the Ozarks to prep him for his upcoming Wilderness Survival test for the Eagle Scouts. But as the sundown begins and night falls upon them, the boys are reminded to truly be prepared for anything. Wookiees in the Wilderness is a buddy drama about race, class, wasted potential, retaliation, Star Wars, and equal opportunity in Trump’s America.
Marcus Scott’s plays include Sibling Rivalries (2021 Semifinalist for Blue Ink Playwriting Award), Heartbeat Opera's Fidelio (Baruch Performing Arts Center), Tumbleweed (finalist for the 2017/2018 Humanitas Play LA Workshop, Playwrights Foundation's 2017 Bay Area Playwrights Festival and the 2017 Austin Playhouse Festival of New American Plays; semi-finalist for the 2017/2018 New Dramatists Princess Grace Fellowship Award), Cherry Bomb (recipient of Drama League’s 2017 First Stage Artist In Residence; 2017 finalist for the Yale Institute for Music Theatre), Malaise (2017 DUAF at Cherry Lane Theater), Blood Orange (2018 DUAF at Theater 80 St. Marks), among others.
By Phillip Christian Smith
Gladys and Minerva, casual chemo friends, discuss life, the south, children, and the handsome cancer patient in Room A. Has Gladys finally fallen in with the bad girls in her twilight years?
Phillip Christian Smith is a 2020-2021 Playwrights Realm Writing Fellow, Lambda Literary Fellow, Winter Playwrights Retreat, Blue Ink Playwriting Award Semi-Finalist, Finalist for The Dramatists Guild Fellowship and New Dramatists Finalist and Semi-finalist PlayPenn, Two time Semi-finalist for The O’Neill (NPC), Semi-finalist Barrington Stage Burman Award, and runner-up in The Theatre of Risk Modern Tragedy writing competition for his play The Chechens, which also won Theatre Conspiracy’s playwriting award, and will be produced in their 2021-2022 season. He has been a semi-finalist for Shakespeare’s New Contemporaries (ASC), finalist for Trustus, playwright in residence of Exquisite Corpse and founding member of The Playwriting Collective. His work has been supported by Primary Stages (Cherry Lane) ESPA, Fresh Ground Pepper, the 53rd Street New York Public Library, and Forge. MFA Yale School of Drama, BFA University of New Mexico.
By the way...
By Lisa Rosetta Strum
Two best friends have been quarantined for the past month. When one of the friends reveals their true feelings for the other, perceptions, prejudices and fears get exposed and a friendship could be changed forever.
Lisa Rosetta Strum is a writer, director, actor, solo performer and educator. Her solo play, She Gon' Learn premiered at the Emerging Artist Theatre Festival at TADA!, followed by sold out performances at the United Solo Festival on Theatre Row in NYC where the play received one of the festival's Best Solo Show Awards. Lisa was a Finalist for the Doric Wilson Independent Playwright Award and was the recipient of the Playwrights Initiative Fellowship at the Djerassi Resident Artists Program. As an actor Lisa received a Broadway World Award for Best Actress in the regional production of Fences at The Rep at the University of Delaware, and she has appeared in Talking Peace, and many other productions.
COVID Safety Information:
All in attendance must adhere to the COVID guidelines that apply to this show. Vaccines will be required for all audience members, staff, and performers. You can prove your vaccination status (two weeks past final dose by show day) using your vaccine card or your Excelsior App. We can also accept a photo of your vax card, but only when presented with photo ID. Masks are required for the duration of your time spent indoors. We will be conducting contact tracing at the door. We will be seating at limited capacity with space between parties. Our theaters are equipped with a ventilation system capable of completely replacing the air in the space every ten minutes. Surfaces are sanitized regularly.
Age Guidance: 13
No wheelchair access at venue
REPERTORY PERFORMANCE SCHEDULE:
VISIT the website.
Zhailon Levingston and Tracey Conyer Lee
Agyeiwaa Asante, Rachel Herron, Fedna Jacquet, Marcus Scott, Phillip Christian Smith and Lisa Strum