by Richard McElvain
A one-person drama inspired by Stefan Zweig's classic novella
Imprisoned by Gestapo. Solitary confinement. Mind disintegrating. A stolen book on chess sets your imagination ablaze. Your conscious self divides into two feuding master players. Eventual escape. And finally you teeter at the edge of madness as you dare to challenge the greatest chess player in the world.
by Maria Micheles
American Love is searching for love, but impractical love, everyone falling for the same person, who has everything, and gambling away a part of one’s life. Before getting married, Semele still contemplating life with Hewlett, finds actors resembling people from her past to cast in a play and relive the happiest time of her life once more, but soon enough they start appearing...
written by Scott C. Sickles
directed by Fritz Brekeller
When Fletcher Driscoll returned to his hometown to direct Romed and Juliet, he never expected to end up in his own star-crossed romance with Jeff, a recently out divorcé with a complicated past. Nor was he prepared to confront Tommy, his high school best friend who broke his heart.... repeatedly and on purpose. Fortunately Fletcher and Jeff are keeping it simple, so what could possibly go wrong?
by Jason Howard
They say Helios carries the sun across the sky in a golden chariot from east to west every day. He may have done it over Providence this morning. Sarah is watching Dawn slowly open her eyes. Amy watches Ryan as he sleeps, their unspoken promises dangerous and unexpected. Some of us inspire and others destroy, twisting around each other as we try to find our balance, moving into the divine.
by Allan Knee
Music by Robert Wolf and Ricardo Grilli
Think Mount Rushmore.
Now think 75 years later.
Leonard Fisher - a naive 26-year-old street artist - a competitor of the Naked Cowboy - is commissioned by the Arts Council of South Beach, Florida, to create - to sculpt - Mt. Rushmore - to transform South Beach into the cultural capital it longs to be. Rather than sculpt four presidents - as the original Rushmore had - Leonard creates - sculpts - who he is passionate about. His four heads consist of the whistle blower Ed Snowden, the songbird Nicki Minaj, the iconic spaceman Ziggy Stardust and the bumbling Homer Simpson. This leads to controversy among various groups - and even one of the heads rebels. But Leonard - inspired by a growing interest from Disney - and one of the attractive members of the Arts Council - grows up and fights for what he believes in.
by Mark Loewenstern
Nellie Bly, aspiring daredevil reporter, went undercover in an insane asylum on Blackwell's Island (now Roosevelt Island) in New York City, 1887. There she befriended a patient named Anne Neville. After 10 days, Nellie was sprung from the asylum to write her story. Anne stayed.
This expressionistic play tells the above story from Anne Neville's perspective.
BOOK: Laurie Graff
COMPOSER/LYRICIST: Nancy Shayne
On the coldest night of the year a handful of New Yorkers brave the elements to attend a pet bereavement meeting, each reeling from the recent loss of their BFF, best furry friend. But grief gets derailed when the group’s animal instincts sniff out the truth about their leader. A musical tribute to love, loss and treats.
by Liz Amberly
When a fire destroys a couple’s home and sends the wife into a coma, the husband must face his fears and fight for his marriage, his sanity, and his future. This drama has elements of fantasy and explores how lost a man can get searching for a way back home.
by Alan C. Breindel
directed by Leslie Kincaid Burby
Through the Darkness recounts the unimaginable journeys and true stories of four courageous men and women who left everything behind, including their loved ones, so that they might stay one step ahead of the Holocaust.
by Natalie Bates
These Things Happen is a play about the costs of keeping, and of revealing, a painful family secret. Joanne, a 40-ish painter living in suburban New York, is stunned to learn that her daughter, Jesse, was molested as an adolescent by her uncle—the same uncle who, we discover, abused Joanne at the same age. Jesse intends to confront and expose him on the occasion of his granddaughter’s bat mitzvah, a plan that meets with denial and resistance from both her mother and grandmother. An intensifying series of confrontations between Jesse, Joanne and her father and mother uncover patterns of betrayal that span generations—and threaten to extend into the future. It’s up to Jesse to lead the battle to break the chain of lies told in the name of a family's 'survival'.
Written and directed by Jack Feldstein
Today, the West faces a crisis of refugees and immigration. And the families who emigrate? How do they cope with displacement and reconciling the old with the new? In THE SPARKLING CITY OF OMAR MAZEN, the son in an immigrant Muslim family struggles to find his own path in small town Australia and follow his own dreams.
book and music by Robert Koutras
directed by Emma Berry
Finding himself in an impossible situation, a man is forced to confront his decisions, mistakes, successes and resentments. This takes a village. All the important people from his past surround him, some with their own lessons to learn, as we travel down this path of love, loss, forgiveness, and the beyond.
by Sam Graber
On a sunny weekday afternoon, Jim Bender sees a teenage boy lurch towards the entrance of the local high school, two shotguns beneath a trench coat. In a moment's decision Jim brandishes his own firearm, stopping a shooter-massacre before it happens. Jim Bender is a hero. But as more of the story comes to light, this truth becomes a lot less clear—and that is not what people need it to be.
Are today's shooter-massacres the result of a destabilized male identity? What does it mean to "be a man" today?
NOTE: This reading will take place on the WorkShop Theater Main Stage.
by Owen Thompson
At the bitter end of the Vietnam War, the very last American soldiers restlessly wait for the fall of Saigon. But two of them share a dangerous secret and will do almost anything to get out of the pressure-cooker of a city before it is taken. A story of wartime passion, intrigue, and betrayal, The Green asks us to consider just how far we would go for love.
NOTE: This reading will begin one half-hour later than normal, at 6:30 PM, in the Jewel Box Theater.
By Jack Feldstein
ROBERT MOSES, New York's master builder of the 20th century was both adored and despised during his lifetime. More than any other individual, Moses left an enormous legacy shaping our city.
THE MAN WHO MADE NEW YORK takes us into Robert Moses' life, a man whose obsession and thirst for power matched the destiny of New York City itself.
NOTE: This reading will begin one half hour later than normal, at 6:30 PM, in the Jewel Box Theater.
by Steven Fechter
TAKE MY JAGGED HEART is set in North Dakota during the oil and gas boom. We follow the tangled lives of four young characters. Each came to Dakota full of desire and dreams, searching for opportunity. What they find are heartache, violence, and fragile love in a land brutalized by the boom.
Honoring the 2016 Tony Award Winner for Lifetime Achievement - SHELDON HARNICK
by Maria Micheles
A former writer photographs in Diane Arbus’s style, seeking out and shooting marginalized and wayward people. From hospice patients, heroin addicts, nudists to war amputees, her provocative subjects propel her to success, but when she starts re-entering the realities she’s captured, she realizes she might have encroached in a world she doesn’t know how to navigate.
by Robert M. Strozier
Kyle, the middle-aged president of a NYC-based enterprise called The Idea Factory, tracks down the married daughter of a now-deceased priest he revered as a boy. The visit starts well, but when the couple’s daughter, Mindy—a 19-year-old, talented, headstrong, aspiring actress—joins the proceedings, things start to get a little…complicated.
These various entanglements are explored along the way—as are the forces and factors that can, for whatever reason, greatly intensify the hold that certain memories have over us.
by Jack Feldstein
Two one act plays about Yiddish-speakers in modern-day New York City
BENCHING: A Satmar Hasid from Williamsburg, Brooklyn dreams of the secular world.
ISAAC B. SINGER SHOWS AND TELLS: 1978 Nobel-prize winner Isaac B. Singer tells us about his past and is told about it by those who were close to him.
by world-renowned figurative painter, Odd Nerdrum
Set in a family home on the outskirts of a large coastal city, Marlowe examines the eternal human struggle between the sublime and the banal, the consequences of that struggle and ultimately one’s inability to live in an unpoetic world without beauty or imagination.
by Alan C. Breindel
Any Place But Here recounts the unimaginable journey of two young women and young men who left everything beyond so that they might stay one step ahead of the Holocaust and remain free. Come face to face with stories of courage, chaos and seemingly insurmountable obstacles to daily survival, and grasp the meaning of what it takes to survive to live another day.