This 49th Season curation of playwriting offers an expanded PlayLabs Festival and Ruth Easton New Play Series, as well as all new programming, including the In the Lab series—a trio of new works created specifically for an online environment—and Artists in Conversation—a discussion series featuring some of the most brilliant playwrights and theater-makers working today. These artists’ breathtaking work challenges us to ask the biggest possible questions about how we show up for our own humanity—how we uplift every voice in our community.
The Center’s 49th season will feature new plays from Playwrights’ Center Core and Affiliated Writers Erin Courtney, Dipika Guha, Jessica Huang, Jake Jeppson, Daaimah Mubashshir, Heather Raffo, Harrison David Rivers, Crystal Skillman, Jonathan Spector, Dominic Taylor, Ken Urban, and Rhiana Yazzie. It will also include excerpts from new plays by 2020–21 Fellows and Mentees Cristina Florencia Castro, Marvin González De León, Gracie Gardner, JuCoby Johnson, Candrice Jones, Katie Ka Vang, Shannon TL Kearns, Nora Montañez, Savannah Reich, and Tylie Shider.
October 19–25, 2020
For the 37th annual presentation, the Playwrights’ Center is adapting the premier new play incubation program—the PlayLabs Festival—to meet the changing needs of the moment. The roster has expanded to four playwrights to develop their new work. Each writer partners with the creative collaborators of their choosing and receives a full two weeks of writing and rehearsal, as well as a generous stipend for their time. In addition, the Center is moving the entire process online, enabling audiences from around the world to share in the experience of hearing these new plays for the very first time.
Room Enough (For Us All) by Daaimah Mubashshir
we are continuous by Harrison David Rivers
Mother of Exiles by Jessica Huang
Begin, Begin, Begin Again by Erin Courtney
Playwriting Fellows Showcase
RUTH EASTON NEW PLAY SERIES
December 2020–April 2021
Now entering its 16th year, the Ruth Easton New Play Series is evolving, offering deeper development opportunities than ever before. The five featured Core and Affiliated Writers will work with teams of renowned artists, hand-selected by the playwright, to workshop their new plays over a 30-hour development process—a 25% percent increase from years past. Made possible by the support of the Ruth Easton Fund of the Edelstein Family Foundation, this year’s expanded program gives playwrights more time, more space, and more support to radically experiment. And, as a gift to all, these new plays will be showcased online, completely for free.
No Cure by Jake Jeppson
Getting There by Dipika Guha
This Much I Know by Jonathan Spector
Pulp Vérité by Crystal Skillman
- Nancy by Rhiana Yazzie
IN THE LAB
December 2020–April 2021
New worlds require new ways.
And the Playwrights’ Center is stepping up our support to meet this moment, launching a brand new online development and performance project series called In the Lab. Through this innovative program, three writers will develop experimental new works, pushing the boundaries of form and content, and revolutionizing the way we experience stories.
Vapor Trail by Ken Urban
Cell Surface by Dominic Taylor
Tomorrow Will Be Sunday by Heather Raffo
ARTISTS IN CONVERSATION
(More be announced soon)
Building on our sold-out Public Discussion series from past seasons, Artists in Conversation offers a uniquely intimate look at playwrights and their process. Unlike the Center’s many scripted events throughout the year, these conversations offer audiences a chance to connect directly with writers, hearing artists’ thoughts on craft, the field, and the world through their own unfiltered words.
- Playwriting and Pedagogy: Teaching and Learning as Artistry with Erin Courtney, Philip Dawkins, Charly Evon Simpson, and James Anthony Tyler
- New Frameworks for Performance—Now and Beyond with Candrice Jones, Heather Raffo, and Tamilla Woodard