Theater Begins Here 

Download the 2014-15 Core Writer program application (PDF) >

Application due: January 30, 2014

The Playwrights' Center invites committed professional playwrights to apply for the Core Writer Program. Created in recognition of the particular needs of emerging and established writers, the program offers significant resources intended to further a playwright's career and is available to writers nationally.

Playwrights who have benefited from the Core Writer Program include Christina Anderson, Trista Baldwin, Lee Blessing, George Brant, Carlyle Brown, Lonnie Carter, Constance Congdon, Marcus Gardley, Jeffrey Hatcher, Sherry Kramer, Carson Kreitzer, Melanie Marnich, Winter Miller, Gregory Moss, Qui Nguyen, Kira Obolensky and Elaine Romero.

Core Writer Benefits

Collaboration Fund
Access to the Ruth Easton Lab Collaboration Fund (requests for proposals are sent to Core Writers in summertime) to develop new plays. Supported work must be developed at The Playwrights’ Center. For national writers this means a writer must travel to Minneapolis for the duration of the development activities. The Center will provide casting, space, and theater artist pay for development workshops. Limited funding is available to support travel and housing.

Playwright Profile
An individual profile page on the Center’s website enabling playwright to post a photo, bio, list of current plays, 10-page play samples, downloadable resume, a link to a directory of published works, and private messaging system.

New Plays on Campus
Priority access to the Center’s New Plays on Campus program that matches writers and plays to colleges and universities fostering new play productions on campuses nationwide.

Rehearsal Space / Photocopy Privileges
Free use of the Center’s rehearsal space (subject to availability) and photocopying privileges.

Professional Connections
Priority access to playwright exchanges, residencies, and master classes.

Three-year Term
Each term is three years; Core Writers may re-apply for additional terms.  

Questions may be addressed to Artistic Administrator Amanda Robbins-Butcher.

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Lee Blessing

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Lee Blessing's play's include: A Walk In The Woods (Broadway and London's West End), Going to St. Ives, (Outer Critic’s Circle Award, Best Play, Obie for ensemble performance); Thief River (Drama Desk nomination, Best Play); Cobb (Drama Desk award, best ensemble); Chesapeake, Eleemosynary and Down The Road.  In the 1992-93 Signature Theatre season: Fortinbras, Lake Street Extension, Two Rooms and the world premiere of Patient A

Recent regional world premieres:  A Body of Water at the Guthrie Theater and the Old Globe Theatre; Lonesome Hollow, Flag Day and Whores, all at the Contemporary American Theatre Festival; The Scottish Play at La Jolla Playhouse; Black Sheep at Florida Stage and The Winning Streak at George Street Playhouse. Other plays: Independence, Riches, Oldtimers Game and Nice People Dancing To Good Country Music and Perilous Night, which will be stage-read at the Colorado New Play Summit in January.

Other awards: The American Theater Critics Circle Award, the L.A. Drama Critics Award, The Great American Play Award, The Humanitas Award and the George and Elisabeth Marton Award among others. Nominations for Tony and Olivier awards, as well as for the Pulitzer Prize. Blessing is married to playwright and TV writer Melanie Marnich and lives in New York  He heads the graduate playwriting program at Mason Gross School of the Arts, Rutgers University.

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George Brant

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George Brant’s plays include Grounded, Elephant’s Graveyard, The Mourners’ Bench, Salvage, Three Voyages of the Lobotomobile, Grizzly Mama, Any Other Name, Defiant, Dark Room, Miracle: A Tragedy, Good on Paper, Ashes, NOK, The Lonesome Hoboes, One Hand Clapping, The Royal Historian of Oz, Lovely Letters, Three Men in a Boat, Borglum! The Mount Rushmore Musical, Tights on a Wire and Night of the Mime.

His work has been produced internationally by such companies as Trinity Repertory Company, Cleveland Play House, City Theatre, Gate Theatre of London, Page 73, Studio Theatre, Red Stitch, Theatre Pro Rata, Unicorn Theatre, Borderlands Theater, SF Playhouse, American Blues Theatre, Manbites Dog Theatre, Contemporary Drama Festival of Hungary, Dobama Theatre, Frank Theatre, Theatre 4, Premiere Stages, Trustus Theatre, Elemental Theatre Collective, Balagan Theatre, the Drama League, the Disney Channel, Factory Theatre, Debutantes and Vagabonds, StreetSigns Theatre Company, and zeppo theater company, among others.

His plays have been generously developed by the Kennedy Center, Asolo Rep, the McCarter Theatre Center, New Harmony Project, Theatre @ Boston Court, Bay Area Playwrights Festival, WordBRIDGE Playwright’s Lab, Playwright and Director Center of Moscow, Florida Studio Theatre, New Jersey Rep, the Hangar Theatre, Equity Library Theatre, and Ground UP Productions, among others.

His scripts have been awarded the David Mark Cohen National Playwriting Award from the Kennedy Center, the Smith Prize, the Keene Prize for Literature, an NNPN Rolling World Premiere, an Austin Critic’s Circle Best New Play Award, two Ohio Arts Council Individual Excellence Awards, and a Creative Workforce Fellowship. He has received writing fellowships from the James A. Michener Center for Writers, the McCarter Theatre Center, the MacDowell Colony, the Djerassi Resident Artists Program and the Blue Mountain Center as well as commissions from Trinity Repertory, Theatre 4, and Dobama Theatre.

George received his MFA in Writing from the University of Texas at Austin and is a member of the Dramatists Guild. He is published by Samuel French, Oberon Books and Smith & Kraus.

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Carlyle Brown

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Carlyle Brown is a writer/performer and artistic director of Carlyle Brown & Company based in Minneapolis, which has produced The Masks of Othello: A Theatrical Essay, The Fula From America: An African Journey, Talking Masks, Are You Now Or Have You Ever Been… and Therapy and Resistance. His plays include The African Company Presents Richard III, The Little Tommy Parker Celebrated Colored Minstrel Show, Buffalo Hair, The Beggars' Strike, The Negro of Peter the Great, Pure Confidence, A Big Blue Nail, Dartmoor Prison and others. He has received commissions from Arena Stage, the Houston Grand Opera, the Children's Theatre Company, Alabama Shakespeare Festival, Actors Theatre of Louisville, The Goodman Theater, Miami University of Ohio and the University of Louisville. He is recipient of playwriting fellowships from the New York Foundation for the Arts, National Endowment for the Arts, McKnight Foundation, the Minnesota State Arts Board, Jerome Foundation, Theatre Communications Group and the Pew Charitable Trust. Mr. Brown has been artist-in-residence at New York University School of the Arts Graduate Acting Program, The James Thurber House in Columbus, and Ohio State University Theater Department where he directed his music drama, Yellow Moon Rising. He has been a teacher of expository writing at New York University; African-American literature at the University of Minnesota; playwriting at Ohio State University and Antioch College; African American theater and dramatic literature at Carlton College as the Benedict Distinguished Visiting Artist, and "Creation and Collaboration" at the University of Minnesota Department of Theater. He has worked as a museum exhibit writer and story consultant for the Charles Wright Museum of African American History in Detroit, and the Kentucky Center for African American Heritage in Louisville, Kentucky. Mr. Brown is a core alumnus of the Playwrights' Center in Minneapolis and he is an alumnus of New Dramatists in New York. He has served on the board of directors of The Playwrights' Center and Theatre Communications Group, the national organization for the non-profit professional theater and is a member of the board of the Jerome Foundation. He is a member of the Charleston Jazz Initiative Circle at the Avery Research Center for African American History and Culture at the College of Charleston in Charleston, South Carolina where his works and papers are archived. He is the 2006 recipient of The Black Theatre Network's Winona Lee Fletcher Award for outstanding achievement and artistic excellence, a 2008 Guggenheim Fellow, a 2010 recipient of the Otto Rene' Castillo Award for Political Theatre, and 2010 United States Artists Friends Fellowship.

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Constance Congdon

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Constance Congdon has been called "one of the best playwrights our country and our language has ever produced" by playwright Tony Kushner in Kushner's introduction to her collection Tales of the Lost Formicans and Other Plays. In addition to Tales of the Lost Formicans, which has had more than 300 productions worldwide, Congdon's plays include: Casanova, Dog Opera, both produced at the Public Theatre, Losing Father's Body (Portland Stage - Maine), Lips (Primary Stages), Native American (Portland Stage - Maine, Lyric Hammersmith Studio), The Children of the Elvi (Key City Public Theater), A Mother, starring Olympia Dukakis, and a new verse version of The Misanthrope, both commissioned and produced by American Conservatory Theater. Also at ACT: Moontel Six, a commission by the A.C.T. Young Conservatory and subsequently performed at London's National Theatre, followed by another production of the two-act version at San Francisco's Zeum and directed by Young Conservatory Director, Craig Slaight. The Automata Pietà, another YC commission, received its world premiere at San Francisco's Magic Theatre in 2002; Nightingales went to the Theatre Royale Bath's Youth Theatre. Congdon's No Mercy, and its companion piece, One Day Earlier, were part of the 2000 season devoted to Congdon at the Profile Theatre. Her latest play, Paradise Street, developed at New York Theatre Workshop, received its premiere production in Los Angeles at The Attic Theater by the Title 3 Company. She has also written a number of opera libretti and seven plays for the Children's Theatre Company of Minneapolis. Congdon's plays have been produced throughout the world, including Cairo and Berlin. Her plays are published, mainly, by Broadway Plays Publishing. Samuel French published Dog Opera. A collection of four of her plays has been published by TCG, Inc. Her new verse version of Tartuffe will be included in the next Norton Anthology of Drama, and is already out in a single-volume Norton Critical edition. She just finished Take Me to the River, commissioned by the Denver Theater Center. Her adaptation of A Servant of Two Masters was at Yale Rep, season 2010, and continued to The Shakespeare Theater in D.C. and the Guthrie Theater. Her adaptation of Moliere's The Imaginary Invalid has been produced in several regional theaters, most recently at Portland City Stage. In the works is No Little Rebellion, a play about the Daneil Shay's rebellion, commissioned by a consortium of Shakespeare theaters. She's been writing a long time and can thank the NEA, the Rockefeller Foundation, the W. Alton Jones Foundation, the Guggenheim Foundation, New York Newsdays Best Play Award, the Arnold Weisberger Award, the Berilla Kerr Award, and, most recently, the Helen Merrill Award for making this more possible. Congdon was just honored with an award "for distinguished service to the American theater" at the Great Plains Theater Conference. She's an alum of New Dramatists and a member of the Dramatists Guild and of PEN. Congdon has been teaching playwriting at Amherst College for two decades.

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Jenny Connell Davis

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Jenny Connell Davis is a Baltimore-based playwright, screenwriter and teacher.

Her work has been developed with The Playwrights’ Center, New York Stage and Film, Ars Nova, Space at Ryder Farm, Asolo Rep, The Gift Theatre, Shrewd Productions, Austin Scriptworks, Theater MITU, and NAATCO.

Goddess of Mercy was part of the 2013-2014 Ruth Easton Lab Series (dir. Jerry Genocchio); it was further developed with the Woodshed Collective (dir. Mikhael Tara Garver), the Baltimore Play Festival and Asolo Rep’s Unplugged Festival of New Work (dir. Mark Rucker), and was a finalist for the 2014 ONeill Playwrights Conference.

Dragon Play was developed at Ars Nova and with New York Stage and Film (dir. Giovanna Sardelli).  It was first staged by Shrewd Productions in Austin, Texas (dir. Shannon Grounds); a later version was Articulate Theatre’s inaugural production as part of the Planet Connections Festival (NYC; dir. Cat Parker), and will be staged at Berkeley’s Impact Theatre in late 2014.

Jenny’s short screenplays include Unmoored (audience award, Woods Hole Film Festival) and the multiple-award-winning Fatakra (with writer/director Soham Mehta; screened worldwide).  She currently has two full-length screenplays in development, and a new play or two up her sleeve; for more information, please visit:

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Philip Dawkins

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Philip Dawkins work includes the recent Joseph Jefferson Nominated world premiere of Miss Marx: or the Involuntary Effect of Living (Strawdog Theatre) as well as recent critically-acclaimed plays The Homosexuals and Failure: A Love Story which both also received Joseph Jefferson Nominations for New Work after their world premieres with About Face Theatre (2011) and Victory Gardens Theater (2012) respectively. His plays for young folks are published through Playscripts, Inc. A graduate of Loyola University, Chicago, Mr. Dawkins is an Artistic Associate of About Face Theatre, an Ensemble Playwright at Victory Gardens, and a founding member of Chicago Opera Vanguard. Mr. Dawkins teaches playwriting at Northwestern University, his alma mater Loyola University Chicago, and through the Victory Gardens ACCESS Program for writers with disabilities. He also teaches Kung Fu to little Chicago kids through Rising Phoenix Kung Fu. Hi-Yah!

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Gabriel Jason Dean

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Gabriel Jason Dean's plays have been produced or developed at New York Theatre Workshop, the Lark, New York Stage & Film, Oregon Shakespeare, the Kennedy Center, PlayPenn, ASSITEJ International, Red Orchid Theatre, Theatre Row, Hangar Theatre, Aurora Theatre, Dallas Children’s Theatre, People’s Light and Theatre and Illinois Shakespeare Festival to name a few.  Gabriel has received multiple honors from the Kennedy Center including the Paula Vogel Prize, Ken Ludwig Prize, Theatre for Young Audiences Award, Runner-Up for the Harold & Mimi Steinberg National Playwriting Award and being developed at the New Visions / New Voices Conference. Other honors include the James A. Michener Fellowship at UT-Austin, Runner-Up for the New Dramatist's Princess Grace Award, New England Theatre Conference Aurand Harris Award, Essential Theatre New Play Prize and winner of the Samuel French Off-Off Broadway Festival. His plays have been finalists or semi-finalists for the Seven Devils Conference, The O’Neill Theatre Conference, JAW at Portland Center Stage, Bay Area Playwright’s Festival, Interact’s 20/20 Commissions, Page 73 Fellowship, the Julliard Wallace Fellowship, Lark Play Development Center and Aurora Theatre Global Age Project. His scripts are published through Samuel French, Dramatic Publishing and Playscripts.  Gabriel is a CORE writer at the Playwright's Center in Minneapolis and on faculty for Spalding University’s Brief-Residency MFA Program.

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Christine Evans

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Christine Evans’ work has been produced, published and awarded in the U.S., Australia and the U.K. Her plays are published by Samuel French (Trojan Barbie), in Theatre Forum (Issue #35), and Smith & Kraus. War Plays, an anthology of her plays on that theme, was published by NoPassport Press in 2011.

Productions include multi-award winning Trojan Barbie (American Repertory Theatre, 2009; Playbox Theatre, U.K. 2011; Charing Cross Theatre, 2011); Weightless, Mothergun and All Souls’ Day (Perishable Theatre; Actors’ Theater; Boston Theater Marathon); Slow Falling Bird (Crowded Fire, San Francisco; Metro Arts, Brisbane), Fishbowl (Red Fern, “30+ NYC” and Boston Theater Marathon); My Vicious Angel (Belvoir St. Theatre; Adelaide International Festival, Australia; A.B.C. Radio Drama, Sydney) and Pussy Boy (Belvoir St. Downstairs). Evans’ plays have been read or workshopped at the Young Vic and at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA), London; the Bay Area Playwrights’ Festival, the hotINK Festival of New Plays, Synchronicity Theatre, Playwrights’ Theatre of New Jersey, Trinity Repertory Theatre, the Irish Repertory Theatre (NYC), Cutting Ball’s “Risk Is This” Festival, Boston Playwrights’ Theatre, the Process Series at UNC Chapel Hill, the Z Space, and elsewhere.

Honors include an Australia Council New Work Award ($50,000) to develop You Are Dead. You Are Here., the Rockefeller Center Bellagio Residency Award, a Fulbright Award in Visual and Performing Arts, the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts (RISCA) Playwriting Fellowship Award (2009) and Merit Award (2011); two Perishable Theatre Women’s Playwriting Competition awards, two MacDowell Colony Fellowships, the Rella Lossy Playwriting Award, the 2007 Jane Chambers Playwriting Award, the “Plays for the 21st Century Award” and the Weston Prize for Dramatic Writing. Christine is a 2011 Resident Artist at HERE Arts (NY), and a Women’s Project Playwrights’ Lab Alum. She holds an M.F.A. and Ph.D. from Brown.  She held a five-year position as Briggs-Copeland Lecturer on English at Harvard University from 2007-12 and in 2012, joined Georgetown University as Assistant Professor in Performing Arts.

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Barbara Field

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Barbara Field’s work has been seen across the United States, Canada and Europe. She served as playwright-in-residence at the Guthrie Theater from 1974 to 1981, creating a number of pieces: her translations include Marriage (Gogol), Monsieur de Moliere (Bulgakov), and Pantalgleize (Ghelderode). Adaptations for the Guthrie from novels include Camille (Dumas) and Playing With Fire, a response to Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. An adaptation commissioned by the Seattle Children’s Theater of Great Expectations later played at the Guthrie and traveled the country on an 8-month tour. A revival of Great Expectations won a Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Award. Field’s adaptation of A Christmas Carol has been a part of the Guthrie’s, Louisville’s and the Missouri Rep’s seasons. For the Seattle Children’s Theater she adapted The Boxcar Children and Philip Pullman’s I Was a Rat! Her adaptation of Dreams in the Golden Country was performed at the Kennedy Center and on a national tour. Her adaptation of Scaramouche was performed at the Washington Shakespeare Theatre.

Her original work includes Neutral Countries, first produced at the Actors Theater of Louisville’s Humana Festival in 1983, where it was named Best American Play; Coming of Age for the Indiana Rep; Quality Time for the Pennsylvania Stage Company; Boundary Waters for California’s South Coast Rep (it subsequently won a 1992 DramaLogue Award); and Off the Ice for the Repertory Theater of St. Louis.

She has written one original opera libretto, Rosina (with composer Hiram Titus), which was commissioned and produced by the Minnesota Opera. With Titus she created a musical, The Skinflint, for the Repertory Theater of St. Louis.

Field is a founding member of The Playwrights’ Center, Minneapolis. A book of seven of her plays for the Guthrie Theater, New Classics from the Guthrie Theater was published in 2003 by Smith & Kraus. Barbara Field’s first anthology: Collected Plays, Volume One was published in 2008.

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Idris Goodwin

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Idris Goodwin is a playwright, spoken word performer and essayist. His play How We Got On, developed at The Eugene O'Neill Theater Center premiered at The 2012 Humana Festival of New Plays. How We Got On (Playscripts, 2013) is being remounted by theaters across the country and was nominated for a ATCA Steinberg New Play award. He is currently developing work with Berkeley Rep, Denver Center Theater, Steppenwolf, StageOne and New Harmony Project. These Are The Breaks (Write Bloody, 2011), his debut collection of essays and poetry, was nominated for a Pushcart Prize. He’s performed on HBO, The Discovery Channel, Sesame Street and National Public Radio. He teaches performance writing and Hip Hop aesthetics at Colorado College.

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Sarah Gubbins

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Sarah Gubbins is a Chicago playwright. Her full length plays include: The Kid Thing, Cocked, The Drinking Problem, I am Bradley Manning, fml: how Carson McCullers saved my life, In Loco Parentis, and Fair Use. She won a Joseph Jefferson Award for Best New Play 2012 for The Kid Thing which was produced by Chicago Dramatists & About Face Theater developed by the Steppenwolf Theater. The Kid Thing won an Edgarton Foundation New American Play Prize. fml: how Carson McCullers saved my life was commissioned and produced by the Steppenwolf Theater in 2012 and published by Dramatic Publishing in 2013. The Drinking Problem won the 2012 Global Age Project sponsored by the Aurora Theater in Berkeley California. The Drinking Problem was developed as part of Playlabs (formerly titled The Water Play) and received additional development from Timeline Theater in Chicago. Her play Fair Use was developed and produced at the Steppenwolf Theatre Company as part of their First Look Repertory of New Plays during the summer of 2008 and was produced in by Actor’s Express Theatre in Atlanta. Fair Use was also Finalists in the Alliance Theatre’s Kendeda National Graduate Playwriting Competition. She was commissioned to write I am Bradley Manning by the Theatre School at DePaul University and the play was produced at the Merle Reskin Theater in Chicago in 2012. Her plays have been read or developed at the Public Theater, New York Theater Workshop, The Goodman Theatre, Steppenwolf Theater Company, Center Theatre Group, American Theater Company, About Face Theatre, Chicago Dramatists, The Playwrights’ Center of Minneapolis, The Aurora Theater Company, Timeline Theater, Pine Box Theater, American Theater Company, Next Theatre Company, Actor’s Express and Collaboraction. Sarah is the recipient of two City of Chicago CAAP Individual Artist Grants and is a Resident Playwright at Chicago Dramatists and an Artistic Associate at About Face Theatre. She was the 2010-2011 Carl J. Djerassi Playwriting Fellow at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and was a 2011-2012 Jerome Fellow at the Playwrights’ Center in Minneapolis. She is a member of the CTG Writers’ Workshop and the Playwrights’ Union. She collaborated with the Liz Lerman Dance Exchange on A Matter of Origins. In 2012 Sarah was named, Best Playwright of 2012 by Chicago Magazine. She holds an M.F.A. in Writing for the Screen + Stage from Northwestern University and currently lives in Los Angeles.

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Jeffrey Hatcher

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BROADWAY: Never Gonna Dance (book).

OFF-BROADWAY: Three Viewings and A Picasso at Manhattan Theatre Club; Scotland Road and The Turn of the Screw at Primary Stages; Tuesdays with Morrie (with Mitch Albom) at The Minetta Lane; Murder by Poe, The Turn of the Screw, and The Spy at The Acting Company; Neddy at American Place; and Fellow Travelers at Manhattan Punchline.

OTHER PLAYS/THEATERS: Compleat Female Stage Beauty, Mrs. Mannerly, Murderers, Mercy of a Storm, Smash, Armadale, Korczak’s Children, To Fool the Eye, The Falls, A Piece of the Rope, Jeffrey Hatcher’s Hamlet, The Scarecrow and His Servant, All the Way with LBJ, The Government Inspector, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and others at The Guthrie, Old Globe, Yale Rep, The Geffen, Seattle Rep, Cincinnati Playhouse, Cleveland Playhouse, South Coast Rep, Arizona Theater Company, San Jose Rep, The Empty Space, Indiana Rep, Children’s Theater Company, History Theater, Madison Rep, Intiman, Illusion, Denver Center, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Alabama Shakespeare Festival, Milwaukee Rep, Repertory Theater of St. Louis, Actors Theater of Louisville, Philadelphia Theater Company, Asolo, City Theater, Studio Arena and dozens more in the U.S. and abroad.

FILM/ TV: Stage Beauty, Casanova, The Duchess, A Slight Trick of the Mind, The Emperor and episodes of Columbo and The Mentalist.

GRANTS/AWARDS: NEA, TCG, Lila Wallace Fund, Rosenthal New Play Prize, Frankel Award, Charles MacArthur Fellowship Award, McKnight Foundation, Jerome Foundation, Barrymore Award Best New Play, and 2013 Ivey Lifetime Achievement Award. He is a member and/or alumnus of The Playwrights’ Center, the Dramatists Guild, the Writers Guild, and New Dramatists.

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Carson Kreitzer

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Carson Kreitzer's plays include The Love Song of J. Robert Oppenheimer, SELF DEFENSE or death of some salesmen, 1:23, Flesh and the Desert, The Slow Drag (New York and London), Freakshow, Slither, Dead Wait, and Take My Breath Away, featured in BAM's 1997 Next Wave Festival. Her plays have been produced or developed by the Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, the Public Theatre, The Royal Court Theatre, the Guthrie Theater, Portland Center Stage, Perishable Theatre, Clubbed Thumb, New Georges, Mabou Mines, Frank Theatre, the Actors Gang, and Next Theatre, among others. She is currently working with composer Matt Gould on a musical inspired by art deco artist Tamara de Lempicka, commissioned by Yale Rep and New Dramatists through Full Stage USA, and a commission for Marin Theatre Company and the National New Play Network. Grants: NYFA, NYSCA, the NEA, TCG, the Jerome and McKnight Foundations, Loewe Award in Music-Theatre, and the first Playwrights Of New York (PONY) Fellowship at the Lark Play Development Center. B.A.: Yale University. M.F.A.: Michener Center for Writers, UT Austin. Ms. Kreitzer is a resident playwright at New Dramatists, an associated artist with Clubbed Thumb and New Georges, and a member of the Workhaus Collective, the Playwrights' Center and the Dramatists Guild. Behind the Eye, her new play about surrealist muse and WWII combat photographer Lee Miller, premiered at the Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, directed by Mark Wing-Davey, and supported by a grant from the NEA New Play Development Program. Her collection SELF DEFENSE and other plays is now available from NoPassport Press. More information at

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Marion McClinton

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Marion McClinton (Lifetime Core Writer) Known for his award-winning Broadway and Off-Broadway productions of August Wilson’s work, with whom he had a long friendship and professional relationship, Marion directed Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom (Broadway revival), King Hedley II (Broadway premiere, regional theatres), Jitney (Off-Broadway, regional and international theatres), Gem of the Ocean (Goodman Theatre, Mark Taper Forum), Seven Guitars and Two Trains Running (CenterStage), Joe Turner’s Come and Gone (Missouri Repertory), Fences (Indiana Repertory Theatre, Paramount Pictures). Other directing credits include Breath Boom (Playwrights Horizons), Jar the Floor (Off-Broadway), Roar (New Group), Thunder Knocking on the Door (regional theatres), Drowning Crow (premiere, Broadway MTC), Elmina’s Kitchen (CenterStage), Yellowman (Mixed Blood/Guthrie Theater), Bulrusher (Pillsbury House) and Pure Confidence (Mixed Blood). Mr. McClinton is an Associate Artist of CenterStage. His plays include Police Boys and Stones and Bones (1994 Humana Festival). Awards include three Audelco Awards, Kesselring Prize, OBIE, NEA/TCG Pew Charitable Trust Grant, Drama Desk and Evening Standard nominations. He is an alumnus of both New Dramatists and the Playwrights’ Center.

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Gregory Moss

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Gregory Moss is a writer and performer from Newburyport, Massachusetts.

He holds an M.F.A. from Brown University’s Graduate Playwriting Program. His plays include Reunion, punkplay, The Uses of Enchantment, Billy Witch, and House of Gold. 

His work has been developed with or produced by Rattlestick Playwrights Theatre, the A.R.T., The Atlantic Center for the Arts, The Empty Space, Playwrights Horizons, PlayPenn, Soho Rep and New York Theatre Workshop. 

His collaborations with filmmaker Roger Warren Beebe have been screened widely at film festivals both in America and abroad.

Gregory is the recipient of a 2010-11 Jerome Fellowship and a 2011-12 McKnight Fellowship. Other awards: 2006-07 Lucille Lortel Playwriting Fellowship, a 2008 Millay Colony Residency, a 2009 Eugene O’Neill Center National Playwrights Conference residency. Gregory is a former member of ars nova’s Playgroup and Soho Rep’s New Writers Lab. 

Recent productions include House of Gold (EST - LA), Billy Witch (Studio 42, NY), The Uses of Enchantment (Studio Festival, DC) and The Abducted (Collaboraction, Chicago). 

Upcoming productions include Reunion (The Brown/Trinity Playwrights Rep Festival) and The Uses of Enchantment (Workhaus Collective). 

Writing, video and audio are archived at

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Qui Nguyen

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Qui Nguyen is a Brooklyn-based playwright, TV writer, and Co-Founder of the OBIE Award-winning Vampire Cowboys Theatre Company of NYC. His work, known for its innovative use of stage violence, puppetry, and multimedia has been called as “Wildly Inventive”, “Infectious Fun”, and “Tour De Force Theatre” by The New York Times, Variety, and Time Out New York. This past season, The Chicago Tribune praised Qui as a “refreshing, break-the-rules writer” and Time Out Chicago named his play She Kills Monsters one of the 10 Best Plays of 2013.

Quis other plays include Soul Samurai; Alice in Slasherland; The Inexplicable Redemption of Agent G; and the musicals Krunk Fu Battle Battle; War is F**king Awesome; and Samantha Rai and the Shoguns of Fear.

He is a proud member of The Playwrights Center, New Dramatists, Ensemble Studio Theatre, The Ma-Yi Writers Lab, and a recent Sundance Institute Fellow. For television, Qui writes for PBS KIDS Peg+Cat.

His company, Vampire Cowboys, often considered the pioneers of “Geek Theatre”, holds the unique distinction of being the first and only professional theatre organization to be sponsored by NY Comic Con.

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Kira Obolensky

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Kira Obolensky is a playwright and writer who lives in Minneapolis. New work includes Force/Matter, with Shawn McConneloug, The Oldest Story in the World, created collaboratively with Theatre Novi Most; Cabinet of Wonder: an impossible history (Open Eye, Minneapolis. Gas and Electric Arts, Philadelphia Barrymore best new play nomination); Raskol (commissioned and produced by Ten Thousand Things Theatre and featured on critics’ end of year lists); and Modern House, finalist for the Susan Smith Blackburne Prize. Kira is a Guggenheim Fellow and has also received fellowships and grants from the Henson Foundation, NEA and Irvine Foundations, Bush Foundation, McKnight Foundation, and Jerome Foundation. She attended Williams College and Juilliard’s Playwriting Program and y completed an M.F.A. in Fiction Writing at Warren Wilson’s M.F.A. Program for Writers. She is the author of three published books about architecture and design and is the co-author of the national bestseller The Not So Big House. A Core Writer at the Playwrights’ Center in Minneapolis, Kira teaches writing at Spalding University’s low residency M.F.A. program, at Goddard College's MFA Program in Interdisciplinary Arts in Vermont, and also at the University of Minnesota.

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John Olive

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John Olive is a widely produced and award winning playwright, a novelist, a screenwriter and a theater reviewer.


His plays include: Standing on my Knees, Minnesota Moon, The Voice of the Prairie, Evelyn and the Polka King, Killers, The Summer Moon, The Ecstasy of St. Theresa, Careless Love, God Fire, Singapore, and many others. Producing theaters include: the Manhattan Theatre Club, Old Globe, Steppenwolf, Wisdom Bridge, South Coast Rep, Alley Theater, the Guthrie, Actors Theatre Of Louisville, the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, ACT/Seattle, and many others. John has developed plays at the ONeill, Sundance, New Harmony Project, PlayLabs, the Playwrights Center, etc.


Lately John has written many plays for young audiences, both adaptations and originals: Sideways Stories from Wayside School, Johnny Tremain, Jason and the Golden Fleece, The Magic Bicycle, Pharaoh Serket and the Lost Stone of Fire, Water Babies, among others. These plays have been widely produced, at Seattle Childrens Theatre, First Stage Milwaukee, Stage One Louisville, Oregon Childrens, the Arden Theatre, Peoples Light and Theatre Co., Dallas Childrens Theatre, Main Street Theatre, others. John just optioned the stage rights to a popular series of childrens books, The Sisters Eight.


Awards include: a Jerome Fellowship, three McKnight Fellowships, a National Endowment For The Arts Fellowship, two Bush Fellowships, the Society of Midland Authors Award For Drama (Standing on my Knees), Kennedy Center Award For New Plays (The Summer Moon), Rockefeller Residency (Wisdom Bridge). John has written screen and teleplays for: Disney, Amblin Entertainment, ShadowCatcher Entertainment, Yorktown Productions, Lorimar Television, among others. His screenplay A Slaying Song Tonight has just been finished.


Johns book about bedtime stories, Tell Me A Story In The Dark, will be published shortly by Familius. John has two YA novels going: Smartass and Deep River (in collaboration with David Grant). Audiobooks based on Johns novellas will shortly be available. John writes reviews and essays for and does voice acting, through Talent Poole.


He lives in Minneapolis with his wife Mary and their son Michael.

His website is:

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Susan Soon He Stanton

Core Writers   

Susan Soon He Stanton is a playwright and screenwriter based in New York, originally from the consonant-free town of Aiea, Hawai’i.

Her plays include Takarazuka!!! (East West Players, Clubbed Thumb), SEEK (Public Theater Spotlight Series), Cygnus (Finalist Susan Glaspell Prize, Inkwell Workshop), The Underneath (Kumu Kahua, Yale Cabaret), The Nose (Perry Mansfield), Art of Preservation (published by Broadway Play Publishing, produced by Yale School of Drama, and Kumu Kahua), Whatever Happened To John Boy Kihano? (Kumu Kahua, winner of Hawaii Prize), Furball, the things are against us (workshop at Lark Studio Retreat, Yale’s Carlotta Festival production), Edible Restaurant, a musical with composer Greta Gertler (Joe’s Pub, commissioned by New Sounds Theatre). Susan was Honolulu Theatre for Youth’s (HTY) resident playwright for their 2010-11 season. HTY commissioned her to write Navigator and Where Do Things Go?

Work developed at Kennedy Center, Playwrights Horizons, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Hedgebrook, Unicorn Theater, Rising Circle, TerraNova, 2G, Flea, Lark, Southern Rep, American Blues Theater, New Century Theater Company, Leviathan Lab, Centenary Stage, Inkwell, Voice and Vision.

Fellowships: (Present) Playwrights’ Center Core Writer, MaYi, (Past): Lark Van Lier Fellow, SoHo Writer-Director Lab, Public Emerging Writers Group, SoHo Rep Writer-Director Lab, TerraNova Groundbreakers.

She has received a Sloan Foundation Feature Film Development Grant and screenwriting award. Films include Dress (winner of 2014 Hawaii International Film Festival Audience Award), Dispatched, Good House, and Same Will. MFA: Yale Playwriting, BFA: NYU Tisch Dramatic Writing.

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Ken Urban

Core Writers   

Ken Urban is a playwright and screenwriter based in New York. His plays have been produced and developed at Summer Play Festival at The Public, Donmar Warehouse (London), Epic Theatre Ensemble, Studio 42, Theatre @ Boston Court, Williamstown Theatre Festival, Playwrights Horizons, Irish Rep, Primary Stages, kef productions, Stable Cable, and The Huntington. During the 2013-14 season, The Awake opened at 59E59 Theatres in August, starring Maulik Pancholy from Weeds and 30 Rock. The New York Times named the show a Critic’s Pick and it played for a sold out run. The Correspondent was part of the season at Rattlestick Playwrights Theatre. The production, directed by Stephen Brackett (Buyer and Cellar), featuring Thomas Jay Ryan, received four stars from Time Out’s Adam Feldman and was lauded by Joan Rivers in the New York Post. In 2015, A Future Perfect will receive its World Premiere at SpeakEasy Stage Company in Boston. Awards include the Weissberger Playwriting Award, Huntington Theater Playwriting Fellowship, Djerassi Artist Residency, Dramatist Guild Fellowship, and MacDowell Colony Fellowships. The feature film adaptation of his play The Happy Sad, with a screenplay by the author, and directed by Rodney Evans, premiered at Frameline and OutFest. The film screened at over twenty-five film festivals in the US and abroad, with theatrical releases in New York and Los Angeles. The film is available on Netflix and iTunes. His plays are published by Dramatists Play Service, and The Awake will also appear in an upcoming issue of TheatreForum. He plays in the band Occurrence and their latest album D E C K S came out in early 2014. Their releases are available from Insound and Bandcamp.

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Joe Waechter

Jerome Fellowships //  Jerome Fellowships //  McKnight Advancement Grants //  Core Writers //  

Joe Waechter is a playwright and theatre-maker living in Minneapolis.

His plays include: The Hidden People, PROFILES, Lake Untersee, Good Ol Boys, and The Strangler. His work has been developed with or produced by Playwrights Horizons, Guthrie Theatre, Ars Nova, American Repertory Theatre, McCarter Theatre, Trinity Repertory Theatre, The Kennedy Center, PlayPenn, Red Eye Theatre, and the Inkwell, among others.

Awards include the AracaWorks Graduate Playwriting Prize, Lucille Lortel Playwriting Fellowship, and a McKnight Advancement Grant and two Jerome Fellowships at the Playwrights’ Center.

He is a member of Workhaus Collective, Space on Ryder Farm’s Working Farm writers group, and the Dramatists Guild. He has been a resident at Hangar Theatre, Tofte Lake Center, the 2014 Red Eye Works-in-Progress series, and, in summer 2014, was invited to develop a new play aboard an ice-class sailing vessel in the Arctic Circle.

M.F.A. Brown University.

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Kathryn Walat

Core Writers   

KATHRYN WALAT is a playwright with an interest in the details and rhythms of contemporary life, as she explores beyond the norms of dramatic structure and language. Her play Creation premiered at The Theatre @ Boston Court (Pasadena), and was nominated for a 2013 LA Stage Alliance Ovation Award for Playwriting. Her Victoria Martin: Math Team Queen premiered at the Women’s Project, and was published in New Playwrights: The Best Plays of 1997 (Smith & Kraus) and in Dramatics magazine. Her politically resonant Bleeding Kansas premiered at the Hangar Theatre (Ithaca), and received a Francesca Primus citation from the American Theatre Critics Association. Other works include This Is Not Antigone (New Georges’ Germ Project); Know Dog (Salvage Vanguard, Austin); Johnny Hong Kong (Perishable Theatre, Providence). Walat has received commissions from MCC Theatre, Yale Rep, La Jolla Playhouse (Miss Electricity), and Actors’ Theatre of Louisville (On the Road Anthology). Her work has also been developed at The Public Theater, Playwrights Horizons, Manhattan Theatre Club, Ars Nova, Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center, Sundance Theatre Lab, Voice & Visions, and Bay Area Playwrights Festival. She is a member of the Playwrights Coalition at MCC and is an Affiliated Playwright with New Georges. She is also the co-librettist, with composer Gregory Spears, of the opera Paul’s Case (adapted from the Willa Cather story), which in winter 2014 made its New York premiere at the Prototype music/theater festival, and was performed at Pittsburgh Opera. In summer 2014, her play See Bat Fly, developed at the Orchard Project, will be produced in Providence at Brown/Trinity Playwrights Repertory Theatre. Walat teaches playwriting at Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD), and splits her time between Savannah and New York. BA Brown University, MFA Yale School of Drama.

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Ken Weitzman

Core Writers   

Ken Weitzmans plays include, The Catch (Denver Center Theatre Company), Fire in the Garden (Indiana Repertory Theatre), The As If Body Loop (Humana Festival), Arrangements (Atlantic Theatre Company, Pavement Group), Spin Moves (The Summer Play Festival). His devised work includes, Memorabilia (Alliance Theatre), Hominid (Out of Hand Theatre/Theatre Emory/Oerol Festival Netherlands), and Stadium 360 (Out Of Hand Theatre). Plays-in-progress include, Reclamation (O’Neill National Playwrights Conference) and Halftime with Don (reading at City Theatres Momentum Festival).

National Awards include The L. Arnold Weissberger Award for Arrangements, TCG Edgerton Foundation New American Play Award for The Catch, the Fratti/Newman Political Play Contest Award for Fire in the Garden, and the Elizabeth George Commission for an Outstanding Emerging Playwright.

Commissions include Arena Stage, the Alliance Theatre, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Theatre Emory, and South Coast Repertory Theatre. Ken was previously the writer-in-residence for Out of Hand Theatre and is currently a board member and script selection chair for the New Harmony Project.

Ken received his MFA from the University of California, San Diego and has taught at Indiana University (Head of the MFA in Playwriting program), UCSD, Emory University, and come this fall at Stony Brook University.

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Lauren Yee

Core Apprentices //  Core Writers //  Core Writers //  

Lauren Yees work explores the line between humor and heartbreak to create wildly theatrical work.

Her plays include Ching Chong Chinaman (Pan Asian, Mu Performing Arts, SIS Productions, Impact Theatre), Crevice (Impact Theatre), The Hatmakers Wife (Playwrights Realm, The Hub, Moxie Theatre, AlterTheater, PlayPenn), Hookman (Company One workshop), in a word (Hangar and Williamstown workshops), Samsara (ONeill Conference, Bay Area Playwrights Festival, Victory Gardens IGNITION Festival), and The Tiger Among Us (MAP Fund, Mu Performing Arts). Upcoming productions in the 2014/15 season at Victory Gardens, San Francisco Playhouse, and the Cleveland Public Theatre.

Work developed at Lincoln Center/LCT3, The Magic, The Public, Rattlestick, and Kitchen Dog. Former Dramatists Guild fellow, MacDowell fellow, and Public Theater Emerging Writers Group member.

Fellowships: Women’s Project Lab, Ma-Yi Writers Lab, Playwrights Realm Page One residency, Playwrights Center Core Writer. Commissions: Goodman Theatre, Lincoln Center/LCT3, Mixed Blood, Encore Theatre, and TheatreworksUSA. BA: Yale. MFA: UCSD.

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