The 2019 Plays & Playwrights!
2019 Featured Playwright
THE ROBERTASSEY by Kathleen Cahill
Hiker was a veterinarian who could tame wild animals. He was also an alcoholic. Now he’s dead which should be the end. Except it’s not. Hiker wants his ashes scattered in a Dublin lake, near the place of his birth. He moves heaven and earth to make it happen. Including sending his oldest daughter Roberta on an odyssey to Dublin and beyond. Or maybe that’s not the story. Maybe this is a story about a woman turning forty who doesn’t know who she is or where she belongs. Or is this just a simple tale about what happens when the airline loses Roberta’s suitcase.
photos by Sarah Jessup
Kathleen Cahill’s awards include three Edgerton Foundation Awards, the Jane Chambers Playwrighting Award, two Connecticut Commission on the Arts Playwrighting Awards, a Massachusetts Artists Foundation Award, a Rockefeller Grant, a National Endowment for the Arts New American Works Grant, and a Drama League Award. Her play Charm (NNPN Showcase) was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize; her play The Persian Quarter was nominated for a Steinberg Award.(Both published by Dramatic Publishing.) Her produced musicals include Friendship of the Sea (North Shore Music Theatre) Dakota Sky;(Olney Theatre) an opera, Clara, two opera/cabarets, A Tale of Two Cities: Paris and Berlin in the Twenties (Maryland Center for the Performing Arts), a comic opera cabaret, Fatal Song (most recently Utah Opera) and Perdida, the Winter’s Tale set in Mexico.(most recently Catholic University, DC and the Grand Theatre, Salt Lake City. Published by Dramatic Publishing.) Her plays include the comedy, Course 86B in the Catalogue (Salt Lake Acting Company), The Still Time (Georgia Rep/ Porchlight Theatre, Chicago) the comedy, Women Who Love Science Too Much (Porchlight Theatre and NPR Radio), Joy Forever (Cleveland Public, Firehouse Theatre, Massachusetts), Charm (National New Play Network Festival, Salt Lake Acting Company premiere, Kitchen Dog Theatre, Dallas; Orlando Shakespeare; Taffety Punk, Washington D.C., New Hampshire Theatre Project, among others), The Persian Quarter (Salt Lake Acting Company, Merrimack Rep.) Harbur Gate, an NNPN commission. (Salt Lake Acting Company, 16th street theatre, Chicago), and Henry, Louise and Henri (one act) at The Women’s Playwrights Initiative, Ivoryton Playhouse, CT. She wrote the screenplay for the independent feature, Downtown Express.
HOMERIDAE by Alexandra Espinoza
Mac, an adjunct lecturer, and Nessa, a freshman, have a lot in common. They’re slightly awkward, deeply passionate about Homer’s The Odyssey, and are both African-Americans in the very white Classics department at their very white university. When they stumble upon the discovery that Homer himself came from Africa, Mac and Nessa find themselves at odds with centuries of assumptions, the institutions determined to enforce them, their families, the Internet, and even Homer himself.
photos by Sarah Jessup
Alexandra Espinoza is a Philadelphia based theatre artist whose work aims to connect creative power to issues of community, identity, and action. 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. 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, is a resident teaching artist at Philadelphia Young Playwrights, and has facilitated the creative expression of people aged 7 to 70.
¡O CASCADIA! by Ramón Esquivel
For Ayo, Eshana, Hyun, and Tlaloc, discovering each other among the waters, forests, and mountains of the Pacific Northwest offers glimpses of the lives they yearn to live, and the hope that together all things are possible. But are they? As expectations of culture, family, society, and religion threaten to pull them apart, four friends struggle to hold their fragile world together, even as the earth breaks apart.
photos by Sarah Jessup
Ramón Esquivel is a playwright and educator based in the Pacific Northwest. His plays Luna, Nasty, and Nocturnal are published through Dramatic Publishing, and his work is included in two recent anthologies, New Visions/New Voices: 25 Years/25 Plays, and Palabras del Cielo: An Exploration of Latina/o Theatre for Young Audiences. His play, The Shahrazad Society, won the Aurand Harris Memorial Playwriting Award from New England Theatre Conference. Recent work: Above Between Below, a collaboration between Seattle Children’s Theatre, Oregon Children’s Theatre, and Kaiser Permanente Educational Theatre; The Hero Twins: Blood Race at Appalachian Young People’s Theatre, and soon at the University of Texas at Austin, Childsplay Theatre, and Phoenix College; and Dulce at the Austin Latino New Play Festival. Ramón has taught Humanities, drama, and creative writing in Washington DC, Brooklyn, Vancouver BC, and Seattle. He currently teaches playwriting and theatre education at Central Washington University.
A LITTLE GHOST STORY by Jennifer Rumberger
Lettie doesn’t believe in ghosts, but when her father Jake reports that strange things are happening in the middle of the night she drops everything and heads home; to the house she grew up in, the house her dad is renovating, the house where – ten months ago – her sister Mara died of an opioid overdose. Convinced her father is in denial, but unable to shake the haunted feeling at home, Lettie calls in her skeptic sister Claire to strengthen her resolve. With the holidays approaching, one family struggles to move forward in a home that, even gutted, holds tight to memories of the past.
photos by Sarah Jessup
Jennifer Rumberger is a Chicago-based playwright. Recent productions include Night in Alachua County with Wildclaw Theatre, Open Blue Sky at Stella Adler/Tisch School of the Arts and The Bride with the Living Room Playmakers and Chicago Fringe Festival. Upcoming productions include a currently untitled Mary Shelley-based project under commission with the Gift Theatre Company, slated for a 2020 world premiere. Jennifer’s work has been developed or presented in New York, Houston, Chicago, and Florida by The Lark Playwrights Center, id Theater, The Gift Theatre Company, Black Box Acting Studio, The Living Room Playmakers, Commission Theatre Company, Wordsmyth Theatre Company, White Rose Miami, and Northwestern University. Her play Night in Alachua County was developed at the 2014 Seven Devils Playwrights Conference. She writes nonfiction prose and performs at live storytelling events in Chicago. She is a founding member and associate playwright with the Living Room Playmakers. MFA: Northwestern.
TWO MINUTES AFTER DAWN by Vinecia Coleman
For the past year and a half, Sam has been working and saving for a new house, caring for her ailing mother Leann, and juggling her relationship with her husband Jack. As the medical bills begin to pile up and Leann slips further and further into a world of her own, Sam longs for a world free of the many burdens she is carrying. Will the end of Leann’s life offer Sam the future she’s always dreamed of? Or will the loss force Sam to stand face-to-face with something she never saw coming: her present?
photos by Sarah Jessup
Upcoming: Not in Our Neighborhood (Minnesota History Theatre, Co-writer) II (The Neighborhood Theatre); The Red Pen (University of Idaho/Chicago Dramatists and Region VII KCACTF readings); As You Like It (adaptation), Lucy, Stationary/Stationery (University of Idaho); But What Am I? (University of Idaho production and Region VII KCACTF reading); Home (Minnesota Fringe Festival, Region V KCACTF, Iowa State University, and University of Alaska Fairbanks); Ready, Set, Go! (University of Idaho and The Hypothetical Players); Hypothetically Speaking, The Silent City Wish (The Hypothetical Players). Awards: Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival Region VII: National Partners of American Theatre nomination, The Red Pen and John Cauble Short Play award semi-finalist, But What Am I? (2016); Certificates of Merit, Lucy and Ready, Set, Go! (2014). Region V: Invited Production, Home (The Place Where My Stuff Resides) and John Cauble Short Play award national semi finalist, Home (2013). Education: MFA, Dramatic Writing and Directing, University of Idaho; BS, Microbiology, Iowa State University of Science and Technology.
THEN, OF COURSE, ALL THE THINGS HAPPENED by Max Reuben
What if you took all the things that happened: that time you bought a car, or buried a stray cat, or the time you waited for a ride in the rain, and turned them round and round like a kaleidoscope, tethering unremarkable moments and half-memories into whole new narratives? This is the world of Then, Of Course, All The Things Happened. One play, countless variations.
Max Reuben is a Philadelphia-born, Brooklyn-based playwright, director, and teacher who loves big-hearted, humanistic theater that attempts to reduce the amount of existential despair and loneliness in the universe. He’s written, directed, and devised work in a diversity of venues from Ars Nova to the Museum of Modern Art to a very hip apartment in Williamsburg. He’s a proud graduate of Playwrights Horizons Theater School, an undergraduate studio at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, where he now teaches first-year playwriting. In the summers, he teaches playwriting and devises new plays with the Powerhouse Theater Training Program at Vassar College.
photos by Sarah Jessup
UNDER A BIG SKY
Randy Reinholz, an enrolled member of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma, is founder and Producing Artistic Director of Native Voices at the Autry, the nation’s only Equity theater company dedicated exclusively to the development and production of new plays by Native American, Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian, and First Nations, playwrights. Off The Rails, his adaptation of Shakespeare’s Measure for Measure premiered at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. His work has also been seen at La Jolla Playhouse, Perseverance Theatre, Vision Maker Media, the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian, Montana Rep, The Alaska Native Heritage Center, Riverside Theatres, London, The Gilcrease Museum, Queensland State Library, Brisbane, The Glenbow Museum, Illinois Shakespeare Festival, Old Globe Theatre and New York’s Public Theater. Reinholz has produced more than 30 scripts and directed over 60 plays in the United States, Australia, Mexico, England, and Canada. He has received the Playwrights’ Arena’s Lee Melville Award, a McKnight Fellowship and the LA Drama Critics Circle Gordon Davidson Award. Reinholz is Vice President of the National Theater Conference, an inductee to the College of Fellows of the American Theatre, on the National Advisory Board for the Valdez Last Frontier Theatre Conference, and the La Jolla Playhouse Leadership Council. He served on the Los Angeles County, Cultural Equity and Inclusion Initiative Advisory Committee; ATHE’s National Leadership Institute, Leadership Transition Team; is a founding member of the Fund for an Equitable Theatre Ecology; and the National Cultural Navigation Theater Project. Reinholz is a Professor at San Diego State University. MFA, Cornell University; BA, William Jewell College.
Private Idaho is a retreat opportunity designed specifically for playwrights who have attended the Conference in the past. Private Idaho playwrights may return to the Conference to re-charge, re-energize or simply to re-lax away from the pressures and expectations of daily life. Playwrights may be in residence for all or part of the Conference and participate in student and community events depending on their desire and availability.
2019 PRIVATE IDAHO PLAYWRIGHTS
- Robert Caisley
- Heidi Kraay
- Rachel Nelson
- Thomas Newby
- Tira Palmquist
- Elaine Romero
- Jenny Sternling
Mishap at the Range
By David Straw
Mentored & Directed by Mallory Metoxen
Pay In Pay Out
By Will Stewart
Mentored & Directed by Sheila McDevitt
The Dark Path
By Challis Strohmeyer
Mentored by Vinecia Coleman
Directed by Genevieve Barlow
This Marriage is Cursed
By Annie Martin
Mentored & Directed by Danette Baker
The True Loss
By Kobi Windmiller
Mentored & Directed by Ramón Esquivel
Playing the Part
By Lizzy Loper
Mentored & Directed by Amy Rush
By Abby Griffith
Mentored by Kathleen Cahill
Directed by Tira Palmquist
Each year, the professional company of Seven Devils Playwrights Conference joins the Drama Program at McCall Donnelly High School to develop new work written by local students. Each student playwright is assigned a mentor to support their work on the page and in the room. Student plays are presented as staged readings at the Alpine Playhouse as a fundraiser for the Joythi Jorgensen Helping Hands Scholarship Fund, which is awarded annually to a McCall-Donnelly High School senior planning to study arts in college. Since 2007, this event has raised more than $14,000 for this very special local fund.
Thanks to the hundreds of playwrights who shared their work with us, and to the dedicated team of readers who read every script cover-to-cover, and congratulations to the 2019 Finalists and Semi-Finalists!
Break by Sara Jean Accuardi
Brisé by Ian August
The Real Story by Bob Clyman
The Fall by Susan Ferrara
The Woods by Jahna Ferron-Smith
The Technicians by Justine Gelfman
Babel by Jacqueline Goldfinger
Shitty Shitty Terrible Bad Remorse by Dave Harris
You Are What You by Mora Harris
A Sisyphus Play Or Talking And Talking About Sexual Assault And Expecting A Different Result Is Starting To Make Me Feel Insane. Do You Feel The Same? by Jess Honovich
Almost Always, Fayeville by Brian Quirk
Ours by Alexis Roblan
One Thing by Scott Stolnack
The Impracticality of Modern-Day Mastodons by Rachel Teagle
Bodega Chain Cycle by Michael Batistick
Hyannis by Kari Bentley-Quinn
Burst by Rachel Bublitz
800 Days of Solitude, A Conjuring by David Dudley
The Adventure Club by Jennifer Faletto
Parallax by Aren Haun
Monkey in the Shade by Steven Haworth
Sweet Nothings by M.J. Kang
Art of Floating by Jenny Kokai
How To Hide Your Monster by Heidi Kraay
Cave Canem by A. Emmanuel Leadon
The Good Guys by Sarah B. Mantell
Raw Pasta by Maya Macdonald
Anatomy of Pain by Mia McCullough
Hitch by James McLindon
The Exposure Game by Charlie O'Leary
Derailed by Hallie Palladino
Westward Mutations by Kristen Palmer
Touch Me Somewhere Else by Jackie Reingold
Alice Plays by Michèle Raper Rittenhouse
Tribe of the Brightest Sun by Carlos Roa
Refuge by Andrew Rosendorf
Borderline by Sianez De La O
It’s Not a Trip it’s a Journey by Charly Simpson
Carol of Carroll Gardens by Bob Stewart
The Nature Of Things by Tracy Thorne
On Your Way Here by Bryan Willis