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Thursday, March 19, 2015

Women Playwrights Series at the Centenary Stage Company starts April 8

samantha

The 23nd annual Women Playwrights Series at the Centenary Stage Company will launch on April 8 with “Futurama”, by Samantha Charlip (photo right),  presented at 7:30 PM in the Lackland Center.

In this charmingly funny and perceptive play, a 1950s-era amusement park in southern Florida claims to see into the future, which has in fact turned out quite differently from the original vision.  When the self-help guru Brian Gold brings his “Greatness Weekend” to the park, the young employees April and Otis, who have been adrift in their lives and their jobs,  begin to have revelations about their own futures.    The presentation will be directed by Tara Downs, a Brooklyn based artist and member of Lincoln Center Directors Lab program.

Playwright Samantha Charlip is a New York based playwright and Writer/Producer for television networks including A&E, Turner and Viacom.    Her plays include: Futurama , which was a Finalist in the O’Neill National Playwrights Conference, won the Award of Excellence in Playwriting at the Tennessee Repertory NewWorks Lab,  and was nominated for the  Kennedy Center Mark Twain Comedy Award;    Below , Love in the Time of Gonorrhea, Youtube Superstars, and One Universal You (Know Theatre, The Piney Fork Theatre).  Charlip’s  television original pilots were selected as semi-finalists in Storyboard TV’s 2011 and 2012 pilot competition and were cited  at the Austin Film Festival. She is recent graduate of NYU's Tisch Dramatic Writing MFA program where she studied playwriting under Pulitzer Prize winner, Annie Baker (The Aliens, The Flick, Circle Mirror Transformation), Pulitzer Prize winner Suzan-Lori Parks (Topdog/Underdog), Eduardo Machado (The Cook, Broken Eggs, Hung) and Oskar Eustis, Artistic Director of The Public Theater.   Charlip was awarded the Tisch School of the Arts Full Tuition Departmental Fellowship.

About the Women Playwrights Series

Catherine Rust on stool_cropped Now in its 23nd year, the Centenary Stage Company Women Playwrights Series ( WPS) presents 3-4  new plays each year  in rehearsed staged readings throughout the month of April.  Led by Program Director Catherine Rust (photo right),  the WPS is dedicated to providing a working forum for the unique and underserved voice of women writing for the theater today.  The Series offers emerging playwrights a chance to work with professional directors and actors in a short rehearsal period, followed by a staged reading of the work in front of a live audience, with audience feedback and discussion.   Each presentation is followed by  lively “talk-backs” with the playwright and cast following the performance. The Series features the finalists in the Susan Glaspell contest, which offers the winner further development support worth $45,000 in a full production in the CSC professional Equity main-stage season, as well as a cash award to the author. 

Centenary Stage Company is an affiliate member of the National New Play Network (based in Washington, D.C.), and participates in the “Extended Life” and “Rolling World Premiere” programs, designed to give playwrights larger exposure and sustained life throughout  the country in their first year of production.

Admission to the “Futurama” is by donation and reservations are requested.    For   reservations and information contact the Centenary Stage Company Box Office at 908-979-0900, or visit online at www.centenarystageco.org

COMING UP

     Also featured in this year’s WPS will be “Start Down” by Eleanor Burgess, on Wed, Apr 15 at 7:30 pm,  “True Love ” by Tracy Thorne on Wednesday, April 22 at 7:30  PM.

The  CSC Women Playwrights Series  is made possible in part through the  generous support of   the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation , the Puffin Foundation,  Zonta International organization for empowering women,  The Blanche and Irving Laurie Foundation, the NJ State Council on the Arts,  Heath Village Retirement Community, and the many CSC members and sponsors. 

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