Meet some of the playwrights who have benefited from the New Play Initiative.
JEFF AUGUSTIN (Little Children Dream of God) Jeff Augustin’s play Cry Old Kingdom received its world premiere at the 2013 Humana Festival of New American Plays. His work has been developed at the Eugene O'Neill National Playwright's Conference (Little Children Dream of God); The Ground Floor at Berkeley Repertory Theatre (The Last Tiger in Haiti); American Conservatory Theater (in the crowding darkness); and Snapdragon in New York (The Imaginary Life of Millo St. Jean). He is a recipient of the Lorraine Hansberry Playwriting Award. Jeff is currently a MFA Playwriting Candidate at University of California, San Diego and graduated from Boston College with a BA in Theatre Arts.
LINDSEY FERRENTINO (Ugly Lies the Bone) Lindsey Ferrentino is a New York-based playwright originally from the sunny state of Florida where many of her plays are set. Ugly Lies the Bone is the winner of the 2014 Newman/Woodward Drama Award. The play was developed at the National Playwrights Conference at the Eugene O'Neill Theater Center as part of their 50th Anniversary Season and had a workshop production this past fall at Fordham University. The play was also chosen for Roundabout Theater Company's Underground Reading Series, Premiere Stages New Play Contest, Florida Studio Theater's New Play Festival, and The Great Plains Theater Conference as a Play Lab selection. More recently, Lindsey was granted the 2015 Emerging Writer's commission from South Coast Repertory. Her work has been developed/performed at Atlantic Theater Company, Rattlestick Playwrights Theater, New York Theatre Workshop, 3LD Art and Technology Center, Manhattan Repertory Theater, and The Marilyn Monroe Theater in New York. Her work has been seen regionally at The Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, The Alliance Theater in Georgia, The Blank Theater in LA, and The Institute of Contemporary Arts in London. She was a 2014 Kendeda Playwright with the Alliance Theater. Ferrentino is a recipient of the Edward Albee Playwriting Fellowship and Residency as well as The Blue Ridge Summer Theater Festival’s Playwriting Fellowship. Her short stories have been published in New York magazine and Aaduna Literary Magazine. She holds a BFA from New York University's Tisch School of the Arts, an MFA in playwriting from Hunter College, and is currently pursuing a second master's degree in playwriting at the Yale School of Drama.
KATE GERSTEN Kate Gersten is a 2013 graduate of the Lila Acheson Wallace Playwriting Fellow at The Juilliard School under the mentorship of Marsha Norman and Christopher Durang. Her play Benefit of the Doubt was produced at The Juilliard School, and was further developed at the Roundabout where she currently is under commission. Her other plays include A Body of Work, (also developed by the Roundabout, and currently under contract with Ambassador Theatre Group), The Untitled Priscilla Presley Musical (ATG), Be Your Best Friend, (2012 O’Neill National Playwrights Conference Finalist, developed at Roundabout), Father Figure, and Exposed! The Curious Case of Shiloh and Zahara(Stage 13, MITF, Outstanding New Play award.) Kate is a writer on the Amazon Prime scripted TV series “Mozart in the Jungle”, has sold two pilots to FOX with Steve McPherson/Lionsgate and Jamie Tarses/Sony respectively, and most recently has sold a pilot to Showtime, also with McPherson. She is a three-time recipient of the Lincoln Center Le Comte de Nouy Prize. In addition to her studies at Juilliard, Kate did her undergraduate studies at the UCLA School of Theatre, Film and Television.
ADAM GWON(Ordinary Days) Adam Gwon is a rising musical theater writer, named one of "50 to Watch" by The Dramatist magazine and hailed "a promising newcomer to our talent-hungry musical theater" (The New York Times). Adam's musicals includeOrdinary Days, Cloudlands, The Boy Detective Fails, Bernice Bobs Her Hair, and Cake Off, which have been produced off-Broadway and around the world in over 100 productions, including Roundabout Theatre Company, Signature Theatre, South Coast Repertory, and in London's West End. His songs have been performed at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, the Kennedy Center, and more, by such luminaries as Audra McDonald, Kelli O'Hara, and Brian d'Arcy James. Adam is the proud recipient of the Kleban, Ebb, and Loewe awards for excellence in musical theater writing, the Richard Rodgers Award and Weston Playhouse New Musical Award (both for the upcoming String), Second Stage Theatre's Donna Perret Rosen Award, the ASCAP Harold Adamson Award, and the MAC John Wallowitch Award. He has received commissions from Roundabout Theatre Company, Playwrights Horizons, South Coast Repertory, Signature Theatre, and Broadway Across America. Adam has been a fellow at the MacDowell Colony and the Dramatists Guild, is a graduate of NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, and is a member of ASCAP and the Dramatists Guild.
JOSHUA HARMON (Bad Jews, Significant Other) Joshua Harmon's play Bad Jews received its world premiere at Roundabout Underground, transferred to the Roundabout's Laura Pels Theatre, and has since become one of the most produced plays in the United States. International productions include Australia, Canada, Germany, Israel, South Africa and London's West End, following sell-out runs at Theatre Royal Bath and the St. James. Other plays include Significant Other, which had its world premiere at Roundabout and opened on Broadway in Spring 2017, and Ivanka, which had readings at theatres across the country on Election Eve 2016. Fellowships from MacDowell, Atlantic Center for the Arts and NNPN. Joshua’s next two plays will receive their world premieres in the 2017-2018 season, including Skintight at Roundabout. He is a graduate of Juilliard and under commission from Manhattan Theatre Club.
STEPHEN KARAM (Sons of the Prophet, Speech & Debate, The Humans) Stephen Karam is the author of Sons of the Prophet, a finalist for the 2012 Pulitzer Prize and winner of the Drama Critics Circle, Outer Critics Circle, Lucille Lortel and Hull-Warriner Awards for Best Play. Other plays include Speech & Debate, the inaugural production of Roundabout Underground; columbinus (New York Theatre Workshop) and Dark Sisters, an original chamber opera with composer Nico Muhly. His film adaptation of The Seagull, directed by Michael Mayer and starring Annette Bening, is currently in production. He is the recipient of the inaugural Sam Norkin Off-Broadway Drama Desk Award. Stephen grew up in Scranton, PA and is a graduate of Brown University.
MEGHAN KENNEDY (Napoli, Brooklyn; Too Much...) Meghan Kennedy’s plays include Napoli, Brooklyn (world premiere co-production Long Wharf Theater and Roundabout Theatre, Doris Duke Foundation grant recipient), Too Much, Too Much, Too Many (Roundabout Underground, published by Dramatists’ Play Service), and Light(winner of David Calicchio Emerging American Playwright Prize). Meghan is under commission from Roundabout Theatre Company, Williamstown Theater Festival and The Geffen Playhouse. An alum of Page 73 and Ars Nova, her plays have been produced around the U.S., Ireland, and Sweden. She is currently writing for the upcoming TV show "Rise" (NBC). She lives in Brooklyn.
STEVEN LEVENSON (The Language of Trees, ...Tom Durnin, If I Forget) Steven Levenson’s plays include Core Values (upcoming, Ars Nova), The Unavoidable Disappearance of Tom Durnin (Roundabout), The Language of Trees (Roundabout Underground), Seven Minutes in Heaven (HERE Arts Center; Emerging America Festival/Huntington Theater Company), Retreat (Edinburgh Fringe Festival), Almost Stuck, and Girls Day. His work has been seen and developed by Roundabout, Lincoln Center Theater, Manhattan Theatre Club, Atlantic Theater Company, MCC Theater, Ars Nova, Hartford Stage, Ensemble Studio Theatre, Berkshire Theatre Festival, and the Araca Group. His plays are published by Dramatists Play Service and Playscripts. A graduate of Brown University and the 2010 Artist in Residence at Ars Nova, Steven has received new play commissions from Roundabout, Lincoln Center, MCC, and Ars Nova. He is a member of the MCC Playwrights' Coalition, an alumnus of Ars Nova’s Play Group, and a founding member of Colt Coeur. Steven is currently working on the book for an original musical with Benj Pasek and Justin Paul.
PATRICIA MCGREGOR Patricia McGregor is a Harlem-based director, writer and deviser of new work. She recently directed the New York premiere of Brownsville Song: B-Side for Tray at LCT3, and the world premiere of Will Power’s Stagger Lee at Dallas Theatre Center. Her production of Adoration of an Old Woman by José Rivera was produced at INTAR Theatre, and her recent production of Marcus Gardley’s The House That Will Not Stand transferred from Berkeley Rep to Yale Repertory Theatre in Winter 2014. Patricia’s other recent credits include The Mountaintop at Philadelphia Theatre Company, Spunk at California Shakespeare Theatre, and the world premiere of Hurt Village at Signature Theatre Center. As Associate Director of Fela! on Broadway, Patricia coached Patti LaBelle in the role of Funmailayo. Patricia has worked at venues including NYSF Shakespeare in the Park, BAM, Second Stage, The Public Theater, The Kitchen, The O'Neill, and the Lincoln Center Institute. She co-founded Angela's Pulse with her sister, choreographer Paloma McGregor. Angela's Pulse creates vital choreoplays and fosters collaboration among artists, educators, organizers, academics and other diverse communities. Patricia attended the Yale School of Drama where she was a Paul and Daisy Soros Fellow and Artistic Director of the Yale Cabaret.
MICHAEL MITNICK Michael Mitnick’s theatre credits include Sex Lives of Our Parents (Second Stage Uptown, The Kennedy Center), Fly By Night (Drama Desk Nominated Best Musical, Playwrights Horizons), Ed, Downloaded (Denver Center Theatre Company), and Spacebar: A Broadway Play by Kyle Sugarman (City Lights, The Wild Project). He is currently writing commissions for Roundabout and Manhattan Theatre Club. His songs have been performed at Lincoln Center, Joe's Pub, The Cutting Room, and The Guggenheim. In film, Michael wrote the screenplay for the adaptation of the Newbery-winning novel The Giver, starring Meryl Streep and Jeff Bridges. His screenplay, The Current Warwill be produced by Harvey Weinstein and Steve Zaillian. Awards include Aspen Theater Masters' Visionary Playwright Award and the Robert Sherman Award from BMI for songwriting. In 2013, he was selected as one of Variety’s Top 10 Screenwriters to Watch. He is a graduate of Harvard University and holds an MFA in playwriting from the Yale School of Drama. He is originally from Pittsburgh and currently resides in Brooklyn where he writes for the HBO show, "Vinyl," from Mick Jagger, Terence Winter, and Martin Scorsese.
KIM ROSENSTOCK(Tigers Be Still) recently earned her MFA in playwriting under the mentorship of Paula Vogel at the Yale School of Drama where she is the recipient of the Eugene O'Neill Memorial Scholarship. Her work has been developed and produced by The Kennedy Center, Ars Nova, The Old Vic in association with The Public Theater, Voice and Vision, the NY Fringe Festival, Vital Theatre and New York Stage & Film. Her play 99 Ways To Fuck A Swan was featured in Portland Center Stage's 2009 JAW Playwrights Festival. She was the Artistic Director of the 2009 Yale Summer Cabaret where she produced several shows including Fly-By-Night, a new indie rock musical she co-wrote about star-crossed love and blackouts. From 2005-2007 she was Associate Producer of Ars Nova in New York City where she produced new works of music, comedy and theater. She has her BA from Amherst College where she first began writing plays under the mentorship of Constance Congdon. She is originally from Baldwin, Long Island.
ALEX TIMBERS (Director, The Language of Trees) is a Tony-nominated writer and director and the recipient of Lucille Lortel, Drama Desk, and Outer Critics Circle Awards, as well as two OBIE Awards. BROADWAY: Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson (also book writer; Tony nomination and Drama Desk Award- Best Book; Lortel and OCC Awards- Best Off-Broadway Musical), The Pee-wee Herman Show (aired on HBO); OFF-BROADWAY: Peter and the Starcatcher (OBIE Award- Best Director; Disney Theatricals/New York Theatre Workshop and La Jolla Playhouse), Hell House (Drama Desk nom.- Unique Theatrical Experience), Gutenberg! The Musical! (Drama Desk nom.- Best Director of a Musical), A Very Merry Unauthorized… (also conceiver; OBIE Award; Garland Award- Best Director), The Language of Trees (Roundabout Theatre Company), Heddatron, Boozy, Dance Dance Revolution (writer of latter two, all Les Freres), and Beyond Therapy (Williamstown Theatre Festival/Bay Street Theatre). Alex graduated from Yale University and is Artistic Director of downtown company Les Freres Corbusier.
JENNY RACHEL WEINER (Kingdom Come) Jenny Rachel Weiner is a playwright and actress based in New York City. Select plays include: diventare (The Harold & Mimi Steinberg National Student Playwriting Award), Horse Girls (Fordham/Primary Stages, the cell, Ars Nova; New York, Collaboraction; Chicago, Annex Theatre; Seattle, to be published by Samuel French in 2015), Nina (Roundabout Theatre Company Underground Reading, O’Neill Semi-Finalist 2015, Fordham/Primary Stages), Jason & Julia (Williamstown Theatre Festival), Stagedream (co-written with Lee Overtree), Aunt Sylvia Is Dead (The Collective; published in The Collective Anthology 2014), Kingdom Come(Roundabout Underground Reading Series 2015). Jenny has developed plays with/been commissioned by the O’Neill Theatre Center, Williamstown Theatre Festival, Northlight Theatre, Piven Theatre Workshop, Primary Stages, and Roundabout Theatre. BFA: Boston University, MFA: Fordham University/Primary Stages. When Jenny isn’t writing plays, you can catch her directing and performing with NYC/LA based theatre company Story Pirates. jennyrachelweiner.com