Page 73 announces semi-finalists for the Drama Writing Award

Opera theater

Page 73 has announced 10 semi-finalists for the 2022 Page 73 Playwriting Fellowship. From a pool of over 300 applicants, Page 73 selected Melis Aker, Syreeta Briggs, Vichet Chum, Kate Douglas, Ryan Drake, Marvin González De León, Majkin Holmquist, Deepa Purohit, Gab Reisman and Haygen-Brice Walker.

Over the next few months, the team will be more interested in submissions from these playwrights and, in December, announce the finalists; the fellow will be announced in January. Last year, Page 73 introduced honoraria of $ 1,000 for all finalists, recognizing the hardships felt in artistic communities during the pandemic; Page 73 will continue to provide these funds this year.

Ultimately, the selected fellow will receive artistic and financial resources to develop one or more new pieces of their choice. They will be honored with an unrestricted award of $ 10,000 and a development budget, managed by and by the scholar during the scholarship year, up to $ 10,000. This additional budget can be personalized to support the project proposed by the scholar and may include expenses such as research, workshops and reading presentations, as well as honoraria for collaborating artists. The fellow will work with at least one public presentation of their new play, bringing in artistic collaborators such as directors, designers and actors.

2022 marks the 19th year of Page 73’s most prestigious award, annually supporting a playwright who has yet to have a professional New York premiere. The 2021 scholar is Bleu Beckford-Burrell, who will continue with the company in 2022 and will receive an additional annual stipend of $ 10,000 in recognition of the impact of the pandemic on his planned scholarship year.

Previous scholarship recipients include Emma Goidel (2020), Sanaz Toossi (2019), CA Johnson (2018), John J. Caswell, Jr. (2017), Hansol Jung (2016), Nick Gandiello (2015), Clare Barron (2014) , Caroline V. McGraw (2013), Max Posner (2012), Janine Nabers (2011), Eliza Clark (2010), Heidi Schreck (2009), Tommy Smith (2008), Krista Knight (2007), Jason Grote (2006) , Quiara Alegría Hudes (2005) and Kirsten Greenidge (2004).

Shortly after two recent productions – Michael R. Jackson’s Pulitzer Prize-winning A Strange Loop (co-produced with and featured on Playwrights Horizons) and Zora Howard’s STEW, received critical and public acclaim, the pandemic took off. hit ; to continue on the same path became, for the whole theater, an impossibility. Despite the disruption, Page 73 decided to focus on its core purpose of supporting groundbreaking playwrights whose voices in the New York theater community as a whole have yet to hear. Through programs including the expansion of Interstate 73, the doubling of the Playwright’s Writing Fellowship, 11-day Virtual Playwright Residencies and New Play Conversations, and a new initiative offering playwrights retreats from Self-directed writing, Page 73 helped playwrights prepare work for return to production. Earlier this year, the organization announced plans to produce John J. Caswell, Jr.’s Man Cave, directed by Taylor Reynolds, and The Beckford-Burrell Race of Blue.

About the semi-finalists

Melis Aker is a writer-actress-musician from Turkey. His scripts were commissioned / developed at the Atlantic (Middle Eastern Mixfest), Ars Nova (member of the Play Group), NYTW (2050 scholar), O’Neill, NAMT, Festival de Cannes, IFP, New Group, Dramatists Guild (DGF fellow), Roundabout, Lark (MEA lab) and more in the United States, and the Finborough and Park theaters in London. She recently worked on script development with Revelations Entertainment directed by Morgan Freeman, wrote “Fractio Panis” with Brian Cox for Homebound Project / No Kid Hungry directed by Tatiana Pandiani, and released her play Scraps and Things on Playing On, reviewed by the New York Times. Air, with Carol Kane, directed by Neil Pepe. Acting credits include: “The Equalizer” (CBS), “The Blacklist: Redemption” (NBC), “Seneca” (HBO Max), Love in Afghanistan (Arena Stage & Roundabout), Proof (Edinburgh Fringe). Melis is the recipient of the Sundance Interdisciplinary Program Grant. Education: Columbia (MFA), RADA (Interim). Representation: CAA and Brillstein Entertainment Partners. www.melisaker.com

Syreeta Briggs is a playwright and performer from LOO-uh-vull, Kentucky, whose solo show, Teeth: A Morality Play … For an Orca-Struh Uh Black Folk Tied Uh Grinnin ‘opens new avenues in the solo genre. . . Teeth debuted as an audio piece at syrbee.org/teeth with stellar reviews, calling the series “a piece of genius, compelling and overwhelming.” While at MacDowell in February 2022, Briggs will compose his subsequent work in the LOO-uh-vull universe.

Vichet Chum (he / him) is a Cambodian American director who lives in New York. He is the winner of the Laurents / Hatcher Prize 2021 and the Princess Grace Prize 2018. Vichet is a member of the board of directors of the New Harmony Project, curator of the Working Farm Residency with SPACE on Ryder Farm, member of the Artistic Advisors Circle of Seattle Children’s Theater and board member of the Asian American Performers Action Coalition. He is currently a member of the Interstate 73 Writer’s Group and the Ars Nova Play Group. During the 2022/23 season, his plays High School Play: A Nostalgia Fest will premiere at the Alley Theater and Bald Sisters will premiere at the Steppenwolf Theater Company. He is proud to be a graduate of Evansville University (BFA) and Brown University / Trinity Repertory Company (MFA). He is represented by Beth Blickers at the APA. vichetchum.com

Kate Douglas is a writer, composer and performer. His work has been presented by The Met Cloisters, The Civilians and Ancram Opera House and developed at the New Victory Theater, SPACE on Ryder Farm, Rhinebeck Musicals and The Orchard Project. Dramatists Guild Fellow (19-20), The Civilians R&D Group (19-20), GTG Speakers’ Corner Writer (20-21), finalist for the Jane Chambers Award (2021). Upcoming projects include the concept album The Lucky Few with Todd Almond, an operetta tour The Ninth Hour with Shayfer James and his certificate in horticultural design at the New York Botanical Garden. http://www.katedouglasprojects.com

Ryan Drake is a queer playwright and educator in Brooklyn, NY. His pieces include Homesick, Or Sacred Heterosexual Spaces (2021 Rita & Burton Goldberg Award, 2021 PWC Core Apprentice Finalist), Courtship (2021 BAPF Semi-Finalist) You Don’t Have to Do Anything (2021 Princess Grace Semi-Finalist, 2019 Eugene O’Neill NPC semi-finalist, Less Than Rent Theater) and Roller Dynasty (Medicine Show, The Actors Company LA, 999 Festival). BA: Kenyon College (James E. Michael Award for Drama Writing), MFA: Hunter College. RyanDrake.squarespace.com

Marvin González De León’s work has been produced and developed at Teatro Bravo, Arizona State University, Teatro del Pueblo, Texas State University, Round House Theater, Page 73 Productions, Playwrights Realm and Playwrights ‘Center. He is currently Jerome Fellow and Core Writer at the Playwrights’ Center, where he was previously McKnight and Many Voices Fellow. He is a member of the Interstate 73 2020/2021 Writers Group on page 73 and has been a Virtual Realm Mentee with The Playwrights Realm: marvingonzalezdeleon.com.

Majkin Holmquist is a playwright from the Smoky Valley area in central Kansas. His pieces include Tent Revival, Every Anne Frank, Stargazers, Skinflint, The Dog Pack Play, The Quonsets (co-written with Alex Lubischer) and Quickmatch. His work has been developed at the Roundabout Theater Company, New York Stage & Film, and Bay Street Theater. She is currently a Lecturer in Drama Writing at the Yale School of Drama and a member of the Midnight Oil Collective. She holds a BA in Secondary English Education from Bethany College and an MA in Drama Writing from the Yale School of Drama. www.majkin.com

Deepa Purohit has been a playwright and member of the Ma-Yi Theater Company’s Writers Lab since 2014. She co-founded and directed the Rising Circle Theater Collective in New York City for 12 years (2000-2012), overseeing the development of over 20 plays by Color authors. She is an actress by training (Harlem Theater Company). MFA in Playwriting: Brooklyn College (2020), MPH: Columbia University, BA: Northwestern University in History. Deepa lives in Brooklyn with her husband and son, teaches MFA students in the New School’s Drama and Performance program, and works as a communications coach for executives.

Gab Reisman’s plays examine the links between geography, history and identity. Intrinsically strange and deeply irreverent, his work examines what it means to live on the precipice of chaos. Gab has developed plays with Page 73, Fusebox, Clubbed Thumb, Sundance, MacDowell, the Orchard Project, and the Playwrights’ Center, among others. She has received commissions from the Humana Festival, Project NOLA, Project EST / Sloan, New Plays at Barnard, Clubbed Thumb and ZACH Theater. MFA: UT Austin.

Haygen-Brice Walker is a half-Puerto Rican, half-white trashy playwright-creator raised by professional bodybuilders in a southern swamp and currently lives in South Philly with his two boyfriends. Haygen-Brice is the co-founder of ON THE ROCKS, a production company dedicated to deep-fried, late-night BYOB dumpster fires that Haygen-Brice makes with director-producer Elaina Di Monaco. He is 2020-2022 Ingram New Works Playwright at the Nashville Repertory Theater, 2020-2021 Playwright Interstate 73 with Page 73 Productions, Season 20/21 Playwright with Playwrights Realm, and Playwrights’ Center Affiliate Writer (2018-2019 Jerome Many Voices Fellow ). Haygen-Brice’s work is as if Streetcar Named Desire, Mean Girls, Texas Chainsaw Massacre and Beloved get pissed off at a Buffalo Wild Wings happy hour (extra blue cheese please) and then walk in. in the baths of the district while listening to the soundtrack of In Les hauteurs. Every day Haygen-Brice is a Diet Coke closer to becoming Jennifer Lopez, which is commonplace for a gay Boricua, but he embraces the cliché and lives in its truth.


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