Over the past three decades, InterAct has made a robust commitment to supporting local playwrights through productions, readings, workshops, and commissions. The InterAct Core Playwrights Program furthers this commitment by offering artistic and professional developmental support to four talented regional writers. The program is a two-year journey designed to bring the Core Playwrights closer to their full potential through one-on-one dramaturgy, developmental readings, and professional support. Each year of the residency culminates in a weekend of public readings in December.
Core Playwrights Weekend 2018
December 14 - 16, 2018
Join us for a weekend of free readings showcasing our 2018-20 Core Playwrights. One year into their residency, this remarkable group of artists has been honing their craft, exploring urgent themes, and pushing their artistic boundaries.
Friday, December 14, 8:00 PM - UNTITLED YOUTH GROUP PLAY by David Jacobi
Directed by Jack Tamburri. Commissioned by South Coast Repertory.
Emma, Chris, and Jim are three youth group leaders with wildly varying degrees of enthusiasm, charm, and actual biblical knowledge. They’ve taken a group of underaged kids on a Christian work trip to Haiti in the hopes that through charity work, they can find a deeper relationship with God (and also get some great content for the Church’s Instagram). After a series of freak accidents and Old Testament-level catastrophes, the group falls into chaos. Now the leaders find themselves struggling to hold onto their faith while battling a dangerous, Lord of the Flies-esque mob of kids who have abandoned theirs.
Saturday, December 15, 2:00 PM - DIRT, ASH, DEAD TREE by Jarrett McCreary
Directed by Cat Ramirez
A young black boy, after losing everything, drifts into a fantasy world of memories and monsters. He wonders and wanders in search of his home, his will to live, and the answers to his many questions surrounding what it truly looks like when one considers taking their own life. Trigger Warning: Depression, Suicide.
Saturday, December 15, 8:00 PM - RHONDA’S DAD DIES IN THE END/NO ONE REALLY CARES/HE WAS A RACIST/ANYWAYS by Haygen-Brice Walker
Directed by Elaina Di Monaco. Developed with support from the Many Voices Fellowship, Playwrights’ Center, Minneapolis, MN
Rhonda just won a presidential election for an extra-curricular club at her school and she's thrilled. Moni isn't happy about it. Principal Anders doesn't see anything wrong with it. Tammy, a [white] diversity and inclusion trainer, really wants to lead at workshop at Mineral Falls High School. Moni isn't happy about it. Raúl has started to go by Ralph, because that's easier for the [white] teachers to remember. Moni isn't happy about it. Amber Sunshine's independent study is a questionable production of THE SOUND OF MUSIC that investigates the "white minority". Kila is reviewing the show for the school newspaper and has a lot to say. Dylan and LaRoyce can't stop wrestling. Oh and Rhonda's Dad will be dead soon.
RHONDA'S DAD DIES IN THE END/NO ONE REALLY CARES/HE WAS A RACIST/ANYWAYS is a messy mashup of a play about race, underground fight clubs, whiteness, white privilege, white liberalism, white tears, white ghosts, Jon Benet Ramsey, diversity trainings, all the fucked up shit about high school, and WEST SIDE STORY.
Sunday, December 16, 2:00 PM - THRIVE, OR WHAT YOU WILL by L M Feldman (excerpt)
Directed by Larissa Lury. Supported by the New Georges Audrey Residency
This is a story about the first woman to circumnavigate the globe. Her name was Jeanne Baret, and she did it in the 1700s disguised as a man. A lot happened on that journey, and before and after it. But nearly everything we know about her life comes from the journals of the men who knew her. An epic tale of historical fiction about our country's present moment, THRIVE, OR WHAT YOU WILL interrogates the nature of "discovery" and legacy, of categorizing the world, of species and survival, of status and privilege, of gender and identity, and of the subjective nature of both history and self. Meanwhile, we watch Jeanne and her companion Commerson on their adventure – from meeting to parting -- across lands & seas & 6,000 plants -- in a voyage that is part love story, part PEER GYNT journey, part Latin taxonomy, part feminist wrestling with historiography, and part theatrical celebration of awe and the human need to thrive.
MEET THE 2018-20 CORE PLAYWRIGHTS
Haygen-Brice Walker is a Puerto Rican-American playwright-creative producer born and raised in the American South and dividing his time between Philadelphia and the Twin Cities, where he is a 2018-2019 Jerome Many Voices Fellow at The Playwrights' Center. His work is a kaleidoscopic clash of caffeine, history, pornography, violence, pop-culture, myth, and magic. He was awarded the 2013 Excellence in Playwriting Award from the University of the Arts; was a Semi-Finalist for Forward Flux Theatre Company’s THREE NEW AMERICAN PLAYS Commission; and a Finalist for the Kennedy Center’s John Cauble Award for Outstanding Short Play. He is an alum of PlayPenn’s The Foundry and a 2018/2020 Core Playwright at Interact Theatre Company. In addition, Haygen-Brice is the Co-Founder (along with Director-Creative Producer, Elaina Di Monaco) of ON THE ROCKS , a production company devoted to the deep fried, late-night, millennial, unapologetically queer, BYOB, theatrical dumpster-fires Elaina and Haygen-Brice make together. Each day, Haygen-Brice is one step closer to becoming Jennifer Lopez, which is trite for a gay Puerto Rican, but he's embracing the cliché and living in his truth. haygenbricewalker.com, ontherocksphilly.com
L M Feldman is a queer, feminist playwright who writes theatrically adventurous, physically kinetic, intimate, inquisitive, deeply honest plays – usually about outsiders, often about searchers, always about the human connection. Her plays include THRIVE, OR WHAT YOU WILL (New Georges Audrey Residency); ANOTHER KIND OF SILENCE (Magic Theatre Virgin Play Festival, Sewanee Writers’ Conference, PlayPenn Conference, O’Neill Finalist, Playwrights Realm Fellowship, Drama League workshop); AMANUENSIS (Georgetown University, Northwoods Ramah Theatre commission); A PEOPLE (Orbiter 3, Jewish Plays Project Top Plays); THE EGG-LAYERS (Jane Chambers Honorable Mention, O’Neill Finalist, New Georges/Barnard College co-commission); GRACE, OR THE ART OF CLIMBING (Denver Center, Art House Productions, Nice People Theatre, ATCA/Steinberg New Play Award Nomination, Barrymore Nomination, Kilroys List); several ensemble-devised works, including GUMSHOE (New Paradise Labs + the Free Library of Philadelphia + the Rosenbach Museum), WAR OF THE WORLDS: PHILADELPHIA (Swim Pony + Drexel University), AND IF YOU LOSE YOUR WAY, OR A FOOD ODYSSEY (The Invisible Dog, New York Innovative Theatre Award Nomination), LADY M (Philadelphia Live Arts Festival), and others; and a baker's dozen of short plays. A graduate of the Yale School of Drama and the New England Center for Circus Arts, L is also an educator (Bryn Mawr College, University of the Arts, PlayPenn, Jefferson Medical School/Lantern Theatre), a New Georges Affiliated Artist, a Foundry mentor, and a performer & dramaturg of contemporary circus. She trains & coaches at the Philadelphia School of Circus Arts, and teaches dramaturgy to circus artists at Circadium and around the country. Hailing from Miami, L has lived in seven cities and is now based in Philadelphia – where she is an InterAct Core Playwright and a member of Orbiter 3 (Philly’s producing-playwrights collective). She is writing three new plays. www.laurenfeldman.com, www.orbiter3.com, www.newplayexchange.org
Jarrett McCreary has been interested in writing since he was 8 years old. Throughout the years, he has participated in all sides theater has to offer, from Teaching Artist (Philadelphia Theatre Company, Wilma theatre) to actor (Philly Young Playwrights). But writing has never left. Since self producing his own play for the Fringe festival in 2016 (The Children of Edgar and Nina) Jarrett has been trying his hardest to create more engaging art and collaborate with more theater artists around the city. He is ecstatic about this new opportunity to work with a theater company he deeply admires!
David Jacobi's plays have been performed and developed throughout the U.S. and in China, including Sideshow Theatre, Ojai Playwrights Conference, Portland Center Stage’s JAW Festival, RISK IS THIS, Great Plains Theatre Conference, Kennedy Center MFA Playwright’s Workshop, SLC Playwrights Lab and PlayPenn. He is a winner of the Holland New Voices Award, Kennedy Center Theatre for Young Audiences Award, a Relentless Award semifinalist, and has been nominated for the Weissburger. David was the 2015 Shank Fellow at Pig Iron Theatre Company and is currently commissioned by the Denver Center and South Coast Rep. He received a BFA in Dramatic Writing from Purchase College and an MFA from UC San Diego.
CORE PLAYWRIGHT PROGRAM
Ideal applicants are hungry for a rigorous development process, and also interested in mining dramatic veins that are in line with the mission of InterAct Theatre Company: to produce thought-provoking theatre that challenges the ideas and issues of our time.
Applicants must live in the greater Philadelphia area (no more than 50 miles from Center City) and must be able to commit to two full seasons of development at our center city theater space.
The two year residency includes…
Group meetings in which a Core Playwright’s script is read and discussed
A one-on-one developmental meeting each season with the Artistic Associate
A public staged reading as part of Core Playwrights’ Weekend
Access to office resources: dominate our wi-fi, copy your script, or meet in our conference room
Season subscriptions for the two-year term.