October Newsletter and Meeting Notice

Our next meeting will be Monday, October 8th, at 7 PM at the Lowell Center, 610 Langdon Street, Madison. Check kiosk for room. 

Parking: Lowell parking is for guests of the hotel and staff only. Nearest parking is the Lake Street Ramp, one block south (you can also enter from Frances Street). Street parking is free after 6 P.M. (try east on Langdon up around the curve).

City of Madison Parking Website: www.cityofmadison.com/transportation/parking.cfm


Starting around 7:10 we will read:
Mr. Ganymede, the Gardener, a Play for Halloween — by Jack Guzman, 25 min.
Untitled  —————————————————— by Brendan Smith, 15 min.
Let me get this clear, your Honor (rewrite) ————- by Bob Curry 5 min.

This schedule has a little room if you want to bring a short scene or play.
* * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *
Update on our Coming of Age Production: 
The committee met this week and decided to commit to the Bartell. We will try to get the Evjue Stage for a 3-week run the weekends of July 13th, 20th and 27th.  Plays are being read by the reading committee this fall.

* * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *

In September we read:
The Grand Opening (act 2) —————————– by Brendan Smith
Let me get this clear, your Honor (monolog) ——– by Bob Curry
Readers were Elenah Rulseh, Jason Compton, Colin Cameron, Alan Gold, Phil Heckman and Larry Reed.

~.~Playwrights Ink is now on Facebook 

The important thing is not to over explain it or completely resolve it, but to let you leave the theater still thinking about it and have you figure it out yourself.

                – Tobe Hooper (Texas Chainsaw Massacre) from “What Frightens Horror Directors?”
NY Times, October 3, 2012


Kurt Brown’s Broken and Entered is running through October 14th at the Chamber Theater at the Broadway Theatre Center’s Studio Theatre in Milwaukee’s Third Ward. The show’s press release is found here: http://www.chamber-theatre.com/media/76378/mct_brokenandentered_mediarelease.pdf

Ticket info is at: https://tickets.broadwaytheatrecenter.com/public/default.asp?cgCode=8
After the opening weekend, some dates later in the run that you might find of especial interest are below.  These shows involve post-show talkbacks; a pre-show interview (Talk Theatre) involving Chamber’s artistic director, one of the actors, and myself; and ViewPoints, which is a talk I’m giving prior to a performance.  The dates for these shows and events are below.
Wednesday, Oct. 3                   7:30      (6:30 ViewPoints in Studio)
Thursday, Oct. 4                       11:00    Student Matinee w/Talkback
Thursday, Oct. 4                       7:30      Talkback following in Studio
Wednesday, Oct. 10                 1:00      (12:00 Talk Theatre in Bar)
Thursday, Oct. 11                     7:30      Talkback following in Studio
Kurt McGinnis Brown’s plays have been performed throughout the country, including Chicago, Los Angeles, Milwaukee, and New York. As the former communications directorfor a center researching poverty and development issues, Kurt has worked in Egypt, El Salvador, Ethiopia, and Russia. http://kurtmcginnisbrown.com/

* * * * * *      * * * * *      * * * * *       * * * * *       * * * * * *

Coleman’s novel Kidnapping Henry Kissinger is available at Amazon.com

* * * * * *      * * * * *      * * * * *       * * * * *       * * * * * *
Blank Theatre in Hollywood selected Kurt Brown’s LOVE’S EXILE for its Living Room Series, which is a development process for new plays.  This involves a 2-week workshop of the play, culminating in a public staged reading on Monday, October 22, director and actors to be determined.  Synopsis. The ancient Roman Ovid wrote erotic poetry full of advice on how to get laid, which was the extent of a Roman’s conception of love.  We moderns are not so lucky and daily struggle with the hope that love lasts forever, with one person.  Laurel, a leading Ovid scholar recovering from a rotten marriage, is grateful to at last be finished with love.  But then there’s this intriguing man who moves in next door….  And when Ovid himself appears, giving her sex tips, Laurel has to figure out if she’s brave enough to again be “in love.”  And what the hell does that mean exactly?

* * * * * *      * * * * *      * * * * *       * * * * *       * * * * * *

OPIATE OF THE MISSUS by Doug ReedMercury Players

Show dates:
Fri. & Sat., Oct. 12 & 13
Thurs.-Sun., Oct. 18-21
Wed.-Sat., Oct. 24-27

All shows 7:30 pm; Sunday matinee 2:30 pm 10/21

Tickets $15; $12 students/seniors 65+
SPECIAL DISCOUNT—Wed. 10/24 ONLY: $10 for all tickets

* * * * * *      * * * * *      * * * * *       * * * * *       * * * * * *


Sixth Annual Original One-Act Play Festival


Opportunity Info

Stage Door Productions, Inc. Announces Sixth Annual Original One-Act Play Festival June 2013 Fredericksburg, Virginia Prizes will be awarded: Grand Prize $150 Second Place $100 Third Place $50
Guidelines for Submission:
All submissions must be original, unpublished one act plays.
Submissions must be postmarked or received by email between August 1, 2012, and November 1, 2012
Additional Information:
1.      Send a duplicate copy, not the original.
2.      All scripts should include a short biography of the playwright for publication on website, programs, and publicity materials.
3.      All scripts submitted electronically via email should be in .pdf format.
4.      All scripts submitted via mail should be legibly typed, bound and of a standard size.
5.      Hard copy of scripts will be returned only if accompanied by a manuscript size, self-addressed,      stamped  envelope.
6.      Playwrights will be notified by e-mail when their manuscript is received.
7.      Scripts should include:
    a.      A separate title page with name, address, telephone number and e-mail address.
    b.      A cast of characters with descriptions.
    c.      A brief synopsis.
    d.      Numbered pages
8.      Playwrights will be notified by February 15, 2013, if their play has been selected.
9.      Selected plays will be listed on our web site,www.stagedoorproductions.org 
10.   All production and publication rights remain the property of the playwright.
11.   Stage Door Productions shall have the right to produce selected scripts without payment of royalties.
12.   Production will be at the discretion of SDP.
13.   Only stage plays will be considered. Musical, film or TV scripts will not be accepted.
14.   All submission must be original and unpublished.
15.   Scripts will be judged on concept, dramatic action, characterization, and dialogue.  Technical requirements will be noted.
16.   Critical analysis of scripts will not be provided.
17.   Playwrights should be aware that the size of our stage is limited. There are no opportunities for elaborate scene changes.  Utilizing existing walls in the space and minimal set pieces is encouraged.
18.   SDP suggests that scripts have running times of between 15 to 30 minutes.
19.   Auditions will be held in March.
20.   Please consider our audience and do not send erotica or gratuitously violent scripts.
Submissions should be sent to:
Stage Door Productions
P.O. Box 8451
Fredericksburg, Virginia 22404
Attn:  One Act Festival
* * * * * *      * * * * *      * * * * *       * * * * *       * * * * * *

StageQ invites you to submit a short play for our eighth annual festival of short queer plays, Queer Shorts 8. Plays should be no longer than 15 minutes in length, and are due December 14, 2012. Please include a one-page précis, including:

  • ·         One-paragraph description of the plot
  • ·         Casting requirements (number of actors, gender, ages, special requirements, if any)
  • ·         Set requirements (remember, this is a playfest with 10 – 12 plays in one evening; we
    use cubes to create the sets; simple is better!)
  • ·         Running time (no more than 15 minutes!)
  • ·         Special technical requirements, if any
  • ·         Who is the intended audience?
  • ·         Is there lesbian, gay or other queer content? (Required)
  • ·         Is there nudity? Adult language?
  • ·         If a musical, is there a written score?

.         If a musical, what are the instrumental requirements? Vocal requirements?


Send your script and précis to QueerShorts@stageq.com.


We acknowledge all scripts received, so if you don’t hear back from us within a couple of weeks, we didn’t receive your submission. We’ll also let you know by early April, 2013 whether or not we selected your script.. Queer Shorts 8 will be performed June 7-15, 2013 at the Bartell Theatre in Madison, Wisconsin, with possible teaser performances as part of other events in the spring and summer of 2013.

* * * * * *      * * * * *      * * * * *       * * * * *       * * * * * *

Broom Street Theater Announces Wedding Contest

Broom Street Theater is holding a queer wedding contest in association with its production of One Man/One Woman, a comedy about marriage equality that opens at the theater on September 14. The contest, dubbed “Love at Center Stage”, will award the winners a wedding ceremony and reception at the theater following the last Friday performance of the play on October 5. Although lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people cannot legally marry in Wisconsin they can still proudly and publicly proclaim their love and devotion in front of their friends and family. This contest will give one couple the opportunity to do that.


Contestants will submit a one paragraph summary of their relationship which can include how they met, why they want to get married, and other pertinent details about who they are together. In addition they are to write and submit their own wedding vows. A panel will judge the background paragraph and vows and the winners will receive the wedding at the theater as their prize, with their vows used in the ceremony. All contestants must include their address and other contact information.


Jim and Connie Engmann of Happily Ever After Wedding Officiants will conduct the ceremony. They have been happily married for twenty years and they have officiated at the weddings of more than 500 couples from many different traditions in the last fifteen years. More information about their services can be viewed at their website, happilyeverafterweddings.info. In addition to providing the officiants for the service the theater will work with other donors to provide flowers, food, and other items to help make the perfect ceremony and reception.


The contest is being held in conjunction with the run of One Man/One Woman, a comedy about marriage equality by writer/director Callen Harty. The production is a series of vignettes around the topic of marriage equality. Harty is well-known in Madison’s LGBT community as a co-founder of UW-Madison’s 10% Society and of Proud Theater. He was the 2003 OutReach Man of the Year for his work in the community. In the theater community he has acted hundreds of times in dozens of productions, written more than 20 full-length plays, and more than 50 monologues for the award-winning Talking Spirits cemetery tour. His first book, My Queer Life, a collection of essays, monologues, speeches, letters, and other writing will be released this fall by Life After Hate.

* * * * * *      * * * * *      * * * * *       * * * * *       * * * * * *

Reva Shiner Comedy Award

We are currently accepting submissions for the 2013-14 Reva Shiner Comedy Award (deadline Oct. 31, 2012). The top 10 finalists and the winner of the 2013-14 Reva Shiner Comedy Award will be announced at the end of March.

The Reva Shiner Comedy Award presents an unpublished full-length comedy with a cash prize ($1,000), a full production as part of the Bloomington Playwrights Project’s Mainstage season, and travel expenses up to $300. Previous winners have gone on to enjoy productions around the world and to garner additional honors such as the National Play Award. Past winners of the award include Amanda Rogers, Anne Flanagan, Lynda Martens, Johnna Adams, Terri Wagener, Sarah Treem, Buzz McLaughlin, Janet Burroway, Jamie Pachino, Itamar Moses, Judy Sheehan, and Alan Brody.

The Bloomington Playwrights Project is a not-for-profit theatre with non-Equity performers. The theatre is a black box with 90 seats. Because the BPP is a script-developing organization, winning playwrights are expected to become part of the development process, working with the director in person or via long-distance.

The winning play receives a production during the Mainstage season following the selection; the winning playwright receives $1,000.

Rules and Submission Guidelines

GUIDELINES FOR SUBMISSION (subject to change):

1. “Full-length” plays will have a complete running time of between 1 hour 15 minutes (75 minutes) to 2 hours 15 minutes (135 minutes).

2. Plays submitted must be unpublished at the time of submission. Plays that have received developmental readings, workshop productions, or productions at small theatre companies are acceptable. No scripts with previous productions at major regional theaters will be accepted. Once entered, subsequent activity does not change the acceptability of the script.

3. Each submission must include a synopsis (1 page or less) including the cast size. A separate page should include a brief bio of the playwright, and production/development history if applicable.

4. Each submission must include a cover letter with contact information and a $10.00 reader fee. Agent submissions require no fee. The fee will be waived for Dramatist Guild members with an enclosed photocopy of a membership card. The BPP only accepts U.S. checks or money orders (Make check payable to “BPP”).  No international checks or money orders will be accepted.  If submitting internationally or if you want to avoid paying by check, pay online with your credit card here:

Make sure to note with your submission that you have paid the reader fee online.

5. It is preferable for musicals to include a demo CD. The complete score is not necessary but may be included. All plays are read by BPP’s literary personnel led by and including the Literary Manager and Artistic Director.

6. We do not accept e-mail submissions. Scripts will not be returned.

7. The BPP reserves the right not to name a winner and/or name a winner but not commit to a reading or production. These instances are rare but can and do occur.

8. Send to:
Reva Shiner Comedy Award
Bloomington Playwrights Project
107 W. 9th Street
Bloomington, IN 47404

9. Scripts must be postmarked by October 31, 2012, and received no later than November 10, 2012. We are not responsible for postal delays, and recommend you not choose to send Media Mail unless you are submitting several weeks in advance.

10. For further information, write BPP, Attn: Literary Manager, 107 W. 9th Street, Bloomington, IN 47404. For faster replies, please e-mail us at literarymanager@newplays.org

* * * * * *      * * * * *      * * * * *       * * * * *       * * * * * *


Up to fifteen playwrights will be selected from among the hundreds who annually submit their ten-minute plays to the company for special recognition. The winning play will be produced in the annual Summer Shorts festival, for which the playwright will earn royalties, be invited to Miami for the festival and the CityWrights Professional Weekend for Playwrights. Transportation, hotel, the Weekend and a cash prize will be awarded up to a value of $2,000.00. Finalists will receive free tuition to attend CityWrights, and may be considered for production in the Summer Shorts festival and other programming. City Theatre National Award scripts will be submitted to the Samuel French Off Off Broadway Festival. The Summer Shorts Festivals are produced annually in Miami in the month of June.

City Theatre Play Submissions Rules and Information:
Please review the criteria thoroughly before sending your submission to City Theatre. Plays will be accepted yearly from August 15 – October 31.

City Theatre is looking for wonderful ten-minute plays for our annual Summer Shorts festival and other programming. We want scripts that are lively and timely, hilarious and thought-provoking, poignant and dangerous. We look for plays that span style and genre. We will consider bilingual scripts and ten-minute musicals. We have no restriction on the age range of the characters. In other words, for us to consider a script for production, we are seeking compelling plays that rise above the ordinary.

Each playwright may submit only one script – send us your best!

No scripts will be returned . No SASE required.

Each script must be no more than ten pages long. We start counting when the actual play begins. Please remember to submit scripts with page numbers.

Previously submitted plays, children’s shows, and any unsolicited longer one-act or full-length plays are not accepted and will not be returned.

City Theatre will consider previously produced works, but there must be a production history included with submission.

Manuscripts must be typed and individually bound or stapled. Title page must include name, address, email address and phone number. We will accept electronic submissions provided all of the contact info and production history is included.

The volume of scripts submitted prevents us from providing feedback or criticism.

NOTE: City Theatre will only contact the playwrights with scripts the company is interested in producing. Playwrights with scripts in consideration will be contacted in February-March.


Deadline – Submission Postmark Every Year by October 31st.
Address Submissions to:                                                 
Susan Westfall, Literary Director` 
City Theatre 444 Brickell Ave., Suite 229                                  Susan@citytheatre.com
Miami, Fl 33131                                                                        www.citytheatre.com

* * * * * *      * * * * *      * * * * *       * * * * *       * * * * * *

The Call for Entries for the 2013 VSA Playwright Discovery Program will open in November, 2012.

To request these documents in an alternate format, please contact us at (202) 416-8898 (voice) or vsainfo@kennedy-center.org.

VSA has an innovative and Free Resource Guide for Teachers to help guide teachers and students through the playwriting process.

The VSA Playwright Discovery Program invites middle and high school students to take a closer look at the world around them, examine how disability affects their lives and the lives of others, and express their views through the art of playwriting. Playwrights may write from their own experience or about an experience in the life of another person or a fictional character. Scripts can be comedies, dramas, or even musicals–be creative! Young playwrights with and without disabilities are encouraged to submit a script. Entries may be the work of an individual student or a collaboration by a group of up to five students.

A distinguished jury of theater professionals selects up to five scripts as recipients of the 28th Annual VSA Playwright Discovery Award. The selected playwrights receive a $1,000 cash award and a trip to Washington, D.C. over Labor Day weekend to participate in workshops and view a reading of their work on stage at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.



Articles and Reviews:

Specializing in Secrets and Their Dear Cost


Published: October 4, 2012, NY Times

THE Off Broadway play “Harper Regan,” a 2008 British drama about a woman swamped by family problems, was first going to be called “Seth Regan,” after Harper’s troubled husband. The title change was hardly superficial for the playwright, Simon Stephens. Like Tennessee Williams, who wrote several versions of (and titles for) “A Streetcar Named Desire” before realizing that his real subject was Blanche DuBois, Mr. Stephens goes down as many rabbit holes as necessary to discover the ideal wonderland in which to set his stories and characters.


* * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *

Shock Value

Critics’ Forum: The Shocking Power of Great Art

Four critics for The New York Times — Roberta Smith, Ben Brantley, A.O. Scott and Alastair Macaulay — are chatting about the role of shock in art: how it works, how it has changed and why it’s still necessary. Jennifer Schuessler moderates.Does art retain the power to shock? Must artists contrive to provoke? Join the discussion with critics, artists and readers.


* * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *

THEATER REVIEW from the NY Times,

Broadway Royals, Out at the Summer Palace

‘Ten Chimneys,’ About Lunts, at Theater at St. Clement’s


Published: October 4, 2012

Hard though it may be to fathom, one of America’s most glamorous locales during the middle decades of the last century was a small town in Wisconsin with the homey name of Genesee Depot. There Alfred Lunt and Lynn Fontanne, the first couple of the Broadway stage, spent their summers, gathering around them luminaries like Noël Coward, Alexander Woollcott and Edna Ferber, who would descend on rural Wisconsin like so many brightly colored, exotic birds settling on a cornfield. To read more:


* * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *

October 4, 2012

Theater Talkback: Hold the Applause


Ah, the sweet, sweet sound of applause – music to any actor’s ears. But is it always? I’m referring specifically to entrance applause, that instant and seemingly spontaneous ovation that greets the arrival of a celebrated actor onstage.

* * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *


‘Tender Napalm’ by Philip Ridley at 59E59 Theaters

Fighting to Have the Last Word

September 3, 2012

Who’s telling this story anyway? You’ve heard that question, uttered impatiently or perhaps even furiously, by one half of a couple to the other in midanecdote. We all mythologize our lives, and most of us fight to ensure our version stands as the official one, even — no, make that especially — when the alternative view comes from the person who’s closest to us.


* * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *

David Lindsay-Abaire and Naomi Wallace Receive Horton Foote Prize


The playwrights David Lindsay-Abaire and Naomi Wallace have been named the 2012 recipients of theHorton Foote Prize, a biennial award named for the playwright and screenwriter who died in 2009 at 92. Mr. Lindsay-Abaire’s “Good People” was chosen as the outstanding new American play, and “The Liquid Plain” by Ms. Wallace received the award for promising new American play. Each winner will receive $15,000 and a photograph of Mr. Foote.


* * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *

Adaptation of Jonathan Franzen Essay Heads to Stage


August 30, 2012

Daniel Fish adapted the essay and will direct the show. Mr. Fish’s last production, “A (radically condensed and expanded) SUPPOSEDLY FUN THING I’LL NEVER DO AGAIN (after David Foster Wallace),” featured performers listening to Wallace’s voice through headphones and reciting what they


* * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *

A good piece about the ingredients of your characters’ inner lives.



Things to Fear and Loathe

      A friend recently told me about a new app for the treatment of phobias. You stare at pictures of dental drills, snakes or airplane interiors, depending on your affliction, and these totems of menace  — interspersed with reassuring images of teddy bears  — gradually cease to provoke you.
Does it work? We can’t know. My friend has a phobia of stuffed animals. It’s something, he says, about the soulless glass eyes. 


* * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *

Lost and Found:
Treasure Trove of Playwright Interviews
“Mostly what you’re listening to is a give-and-take from what constituted the playwriting community in New York and, by extension, in the United States,” Mr. Weidman said.

* * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *

The National New Play Network is an alliance of leading nonprofit theaters that champion the development, production and continued life of new plays. NNPN strives to pioneer, implement and disseminate ideas and programs that revolutionize the way theaters collaborate to support new plays and playwrights.

* * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *

E-Plays available for download from Sam French



Winning Writers Website: More for fiction and poetry writers, but all kinds of good, well-paying contests.

* * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *      * * * * * *

The Dramatists Guild of America was established over eighty years ago, and is the only professional association which advances the interests of playwrights, composers, lyricists and librettists writing for the living stage. The Guild has over 6,000 members nationwide, from beginning writers to the most prominent authors represented on Broadway, Off-Broadway and in regional theaters.

The Guild is governed by a Board of Directors elected from its membership, and which currently includes such writers as Stephen Sondheim (West Side Story, Gypsy, Into the Woods), Edward Albee (Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf, A Delicate Balance), Marsha Norman (‘night, mother), Tony Kushner (Angels In America), John Patrick Shanley (Doubt), John Guare (Six Degrees of Separation), Lynn Nottage (Intimate Apparel) and Rebecca Gilman (Spinning Into Butter). The current president of the Guild is Stephen Schwartz (Wicked, Pippin, Godspell). Past presidents have included Richard Rodgers, Oscar Hammerstein, Moss Hart, Alan Jay Lerner, Robert Sherwood, Robert Anderson, Frank Gilroy, and Peter Stone. Past Guild members have included Eugene O’Neill, George S. Kaufman, Arthur Miller, Lillian Hellman, Frank Loesser, Frederick Loewe, and Tennessee Williams.

The Dramatists Guild of America was established for the purpose of aiding dramatists in protecting both the artistic and economic integrity of their work. The Guild believes that a vibrant, vital and provocative theater is an essential element of the ongoing cultural debate which informs the citizens of a free society. The Guild believes that if such a theater is to survive, the unique, idiosyncratic voices of both men and women who write for it must be cultivated and protected.

To that end, the Guild maintains model contracts for all levels of productions, (including Broadway, regional and smaller theaters) and encourages its members to use these contracts when negotiating with producers. These contracts embody the Guild’s over­arching objectives of protecting the dramatist’s control over the content of his work, and ensuring that the dramatist is compensated for each use of his work in a way which will encourage him to continue writing for the living stage.

In addition to its contract services, the Guild acts as an aggressive public advocate for dramatists’ interests and assists dramatists in developing both their artistic and business skills through its publications, which are distributed nationally, and the educational programs which it sponsors around the country.