|newTACTics New Play Festival 2013|
The 2013 newTACTics New Play Festival
at TACT/The Actors Company Theatre
Unheard. Unseen. Unexpected.
newTACTics is back with our 3rd annual New Play Festival! We invite you to join us at 7:00PM each Wednesday and Thursday evening in June to catch four brand new plays, handpicked by TACT to brighten your summer.
Start the evening off at our pre-show reception at 6:30pm, and play a crucial part in the play's development process at our engaging post-show talkbacks with the creative team.
All performances are free of charge and will be held at the TACT Studio at 900 Broadway Suite 905. Space is limited, so make sure to book your seats now!
Please RSVP to newTACTics@tactnyc.org with "newTACTics Festival tickets" in the subject line, and include your first and last name, date of the performance you wish to attend, and the number of seats you require in the message.
Click the images below to find out more about the plays and playwrights!
Written by Carrie Robbins,
from stories by RD Robbins MD
Directed by Pamela Hunt
Wednesday, June 5th at 7PM
Thursday, June 6th at 7PM
When military apprentice and black freeman Jebediah Wall delivers a wounded Rebel soldier to a Northern field hospital, Dr. Cordell Cuttaridge teaches him a harsh lesson in sacrificing a limb to save a life. But a decade after the Civil War ends, will his mutilated patients consider the surgeon a merciful savior, or a merciless SAWBONES?
ALL THE STARS IN
THE MIDNIGHT SKY
Written by Jeff Talbott*+
Directed by Jenn Thompson*+
Wednesday, June 12th at 7PM
Thursday, June 13th at 7PM
ALL THE STARS IN THE MIDNIGHT SKY is the story of two very different unplanned pregnancies. Kelsey and Trish have some big questions to answer, and not just the ones about babies. But a lot can happen in nine months, and if you let it, a lot can change. A comic drama about mothers and daughters, and maybe, just maybe, finding happiness where you least expect it.
Written by Lally Katz
Directed by Lauren Miller+
Wednesday, June 19th at 7PM
Thursday, June 20th at 7PM
In the midst of global economic disaster, Cookie, a pregnant Romani fortune teller desperate for a mark, strikes gold when she checks into an anonymous New Jersey motel. A grieving mother, a pair of jobless stock brokers, and a landless cowboy gamble everything on Cookie's intuition, in the hopes that FORTUNE favors the bold in the home of the brave.
Written by David Caudle
Directed by Scott Alan Evans+
Wednesday, June 26th at 7PM
Thursday, June 27th at 7PM
When a fire erupts next door, Susan and her teenage daughter are forced to evacuate their apartment. Randall, Susan's coworker, comes to the rescue, but his pregnant wife Kathy is suspicious. What is Susan really after? Why is her husband so eager to come to her aid? Who really is the DAMSEL in distress? The answers are not what you think in this finely observed psychological drama.
*Member, Actors' Equity Association +TACT Company Member
|Click the images below for information about past seasons!|
newTACTics New Play Festival 2012
newTACTics New Play Festival 2011
TorC by Vincent Delaney June 2010
|From the newsletter|
Making it New
By Matt Herzfeld
We asked playwright Matt Herzfeld to describe his experience working with TACT on the newTACTics New Play Festival. Here's his response:
Writing a play is tricky business. Novelists are in the fortunate position of producing their work in the same form that it is to be consumed – words on a page. Playwrights, however, never know what they have until they see it on its feet. This is why play development is such an integral part of the process for any playwright.
This past June, TACT presented its second annual newTACTics New Play Festival, a staged reading series of four brand new plays in development written by Cody Daigle, Lindsay Joy Murphy, Sir Ronald Harwood, and myself. The directors included TACT company member Nora Chester, Lauren Miller, and newTACTics director Barry Satchwell Smith. The cast members were a remarkable collection of TACT company members and guest artists. Each play was given several days of rehearsal and workshops, culminating in two staged readings.
The process was fast and furious, but extremely rewarding. My play, Material for Malcolm Porter, began life several years ago and has been through numerous drafts, in a sense growing with me at the same time that I have been growing as a writer. Going into the first day of rehearsal with Barry and the exceptionally gifted cast, I hoped, as any playwright does, that the work would feel alive and vibrant, and I anticipated making some small changes to the script to help it along before the reading. What I did not expect, however, was the level of excitement and commitment that everyone involved with the reading brought to the piece.
Displaying a rare gift for insightful commentary and analysis, Barry and the entire cast opened up the play and the characters for me in a way that I didn’t realize was possible and forced me to reconsider, in the best ways, some of the primary motivations and driving forces at work in the play. Inspired by the work everyone was doing, I jumped into rewrites with fervor. I was genuinely inspired by these characters in a new way, thanks to the TACT team.
The final step in the process, the staging and talk-back with the audience, was enormously successful in taking the play forward. I knew the main character would be controversial (he frequently abuses and plays nasty games with his girlfriend), but I was delighted to see that the audience, rather than becoming blinded by the character’s cruelty, understood some of the ideas about love and honesty I was exploring with the piece. The play that I presented at the reading was a richer and more complex work than what I started with in rehearsals, and the play that will come as I move along with it, inspired by the response of the audiences at TACT, will hopefully continue to evolve and deepen.
|New Play Festival-June 2012|
The 2nd Annual newTACTics New Play Festival!
Unheard. Unseen. Unexpected.
Catch the next wave of new plays from TACT/The Actors Company Theatre! The newTACTics New Play Festival presents 4 fresh plays in 4 weeks in June. Join us for a complementary pre-show wine reception at 6:30. And stick around for our post-show talkbacks with the director, playwright, and actors, and get a chance to influence the future development of a brand new work!
All performances are free of charge and will be held at the TACT Studio at 900 Broadway, Suite 905.
Please RSVP to newTACTics@tactnyc.org with newTACTics Festival tickets in the Subject line, and with the dates, name, and number of seats requested in the message. You will receive an email confirmation upon receipt.
Click on the images below to learn more about the plays and playwrights. We hope you join us this June and try something NEW!
by Matt Herzfeld
Directed by Barry Satchwell Smith*
Wednesday, June 6th at 7PM
Thursday, June 7th at 7PM
MATERIAL FOR MALCOLM PORTER asks the question - "Which comes first, art or life? And, in the end, does it really matter?" Malcolm is a wry and jaded memoirist in search of his next book when he meets Kathy, an impressionable young woman hungry for love. In his skeptical investigation of the human condition, will Malcolm grow a conscience as he battles unexpected feelings, or will he merely manipulate the relationship to pen his next bestseller?
A HOME ACROSS THE OCEAN
by Cody Daigle
Directed by Nora Chester*+
Wednesday, June 13th at 7PM
Thursday, June 14th at 7PM
A HOME ACROSS THE OCEAN. When the patriarch of the Rast family dies, his widow and only son react quite unexpectedly, in this surprising and life affirming comedy. The son, Connor, decides the time is right for him and his life-partner, Daniel, to adopt a troubled teenage girl, while his mother, Grethe, suddenly takes up with an old flame - an African poet from London. Their two different but drastic actions provides the spark that ignites the most surprising bond between them all.
by Lindsay Joy Murphy
Directed by Lauren Miller
Wednesday, June 20th at 7PM
Thursday, June 21st at 7PM
THE UNEARTHING digs into the dysfunctional dynamics between Fiona and Olivia, two 30 something sisters who are faced with the prospect of clearing out their childhood home after their pack-rat mother's death. What they discover underneath all the refuse and junk in this dark yet hilarious comedy throws them into turmoil, but what they can't seem to find is the one thing they are looking for: their mother's will.
by Sir Ronald Harwood
Directed by Barry Satchwell Smith*
Wednesday, June 27th at 7PM
Thursday, June 28th at 7PM
PUBLIC SERVANTS rips open the dossier on the secret intel and dangerous backroom intrigue that eventually led to Winston Churchill's rise to power and engagement in World War II. This tense drama chronicles the lives of the government workers who risked all to ensure Britain's safety as the shadow of Nazi Germany begins to spread across the continent.
+Member, Actors Equity Association
*TACT Company Member
|new play festival-June 2011|
|In June 2011, we were pleased to offer something new and unexpected for our subscribers! The inaugural newTACTics New Play Festival: a series of four staged readings of exciting un-produced and unpublished work from playwrights new, emerging, and established: Joel Gross, Matthew MacKenzie, Zakiyyah Alexander, and Bart Midwood. The plays ran a wide spectrum of subjects and styles, and we were delighted with the response from our loyal subscribers (many of who came to every play) and from the many newcomers who made their first visit to TACT. The festival offered a rare glimpse into the process of making theatre, and a chance to investigate what speaks to our audience today. We were pleased to find that the diversity of the offerings enhanced the festival as a whole, awakening us all to the joy of discovering something new. |
The festival featured TACT company members Cynthia Harris, MacKenzie Meehan, John Plumpis, Barry Satchwell Smith, and Jenn Thompson, and guest artists Christine Andreas, Christopher Burns, Dana Smith Croll, Matt Faucher, Kenneth Garner, Susan Heyward, Alex Hurt, Evan Jonigkeit, Robert Kalfin, Dorien Makhloghi, Paul Molnar, Allen Lewis Rickman, Debargo Sanyal, Brad Schmidt, Brian Sutherland, and Peterson Townsend. Each reading was accompanied by live original music composed by Jack Ramsey.
We extend our deepest thanks to the newTACTics Council for their support of this venture, and to Carol Mitchell, Kathleen Raitt, Christopher Adam, and Joe Marrone for their attendance. We would also like to thank the Dramatists Guild Fund for they generous support and, of course, our loyal subscribers for their enthusiasm and dedication. We welcome all the new faces we saw in our audience and hope to have you back at the TACT studio again next season!
newTACTics develops new works through a process including research, discussion, table reads, and rehearsed staged readings. The newTACTics team works in close communication with the playwrights to create a collaborative environment in which these new works can prosper. This summer was a successful experiment in furthering TACT’s commitment to the language of the theatre, and we look forward to bringing you four more unique and provocative plays next June!
* indicates TACT Company Member
The Queen of Spades by Joel Gross
Wednesday June 8th at 7 PM
Thursday June 9th at 7 PM
Directed by Robert Kalfin
Featuring: Cynthia Harris*, MacKenzie Meehan*,
Brian Sutherland, and Brad Schmidt
The Queen of Spades is Catherine Chandler, a well to do, oft-married New York socialite who has resigned herself to her Fifth Avenue apartment, alone with her memories. She holds an irresistible secret to success, which drives the envious to extreme measures to reveal it. Little do they know, the one who holds the secret has the heaviest burden of all...
Sia by Matthew MacKenzie
Wednesday June 15th at 7 PM
Thursday June 16th at 7 PM
Directed by Jenn Thompson*
Featuring: Susan Heyward, Evan Jonigkeit,
and Peterson Townsend
SIA recounts the struggles of an aid worker and two Liberian citizens as they grapple with the atrocities of one of the most brutal rebellions in memory. Can they come to terms with their wounded pasts to create a more hopeful future, or will they create more bloodshed in their wake?
You Are Here by Zakiyyah Alexander
Wednesday June 22nd at 7 PM
Thursday June 23rd at 7 PM
Directed by Barry Satchwell Smith*
Featuring:Alex Hurt, Dorien Makhloghi, MacKenzie Meehan*, Debargo Sanyal, Brad Schmidt, and
Dana Smith Croll
You Are Here examines the American Dream as envisioned by an all American family and recent Pakistani immigrants who make their homes in a "Bridge and Tunnel" town. This broad, thought provoking comedy will cause you to question where the line between community and territory is drawn.
SPY: The Betrayal of Mata Hari by Bart Midwood
Wednesday June 29th at 7 PM
Thursday June 30th at 7 PM
Directed by Barry Satchwell Smith*
Featuring: Christine Andreas, Christopher Burns, Matt Faucher, Paul Molnar, John Plumpis*, James Prendergast*, and Allen Lewis Rickman
SPY: The Betrayal of Mata Hari tells the tale of a Dutch courtesan who finds herself caught in the crossfire when she accepts the role of double agent for opposing factions in World War I. Is she the ultimate manipulator, or is she the one who will ultimately get played?
|newTACTics is a new play intiative that discovers, develops, and explores new works for the theatre. The program is not only dedicated to finding new plays that fit within the TACT aesthetic – theatrical works that focus on the text and the actor’s craft – but also plays from the past that have yet to be performed. We want to encourage new playwrights as well as experienced, produced writers to continue to write for the theatre and to discover new ways to use the extraordinary language of the theatre to tell their stories. newTACTics is interested not only in completed plays but also in works in progress, hoping to bring them to completion through the review, development, staged reading process.|
Although TACT is known primarily for its rediscovery of rarely seen, and often unjustifiably neglected works, the company has considerable experience with the development of new plays. In 2002, TACT presented the World premiere of Noel Coward’s Long Island Sound and worked closely with his estate to adapt the play for production. In 2004, Artistic Director Scott Alan Evans, playwright Christopher Piehler, and members of TACT’s acting company, developed the script to The Triangle Factory Fire Project. TACT presented the World premiere production of Triangle in May of that year and the play has since been produced across the country (the published script is available through Dramatist Play Service). The company has also developed scripts through its Readings program, The Salon Series, including work by Dan O’Brien and a new translation/adaptation of a play by Alexander Ostrovsky. newTACTics builds on this experience.
This coming season, newTACTics will continue to discover great new works through its development process and through its partnership with The Virtual Theatre Project of Los Angeles. Each year, The Virtual Theatre Project runs a national playwriting competition which elicits thousands of entries. newTACTics has access to each year’s top ten entries and will have the first option to present them to a New York audience (Mr. Delany’s T or C came to us from this source). Next June, newTACTics will present its first New Plays Festival featuring a new work each week throughout the month. Watch the newTACTics window on our website for information and details as they emerge.
If you’d like to get involved with newTACTics, we are currently forming the newTACTics Council. Council members support and help raise the funds needed to develop the new works and to present the New Play Festival each June. They will also assist in promoting the project and encouraging new audiences, in addition to connecting with producers and investors. If you are interested in joining the Council, or any other aspect of newTACTics, (including play submissions), email Barry Satchwell Smith at firstname.lastname@example.org.In June of next year, we will take 4 new plays and present one a week in this exciting new direction for newTACTics of TACT. More information will follow on this progress during the course of the year.
newTACTics productions will be presented jointly by TACT and Silver Blue Pictures. Silver Blue Pictures was founded in 2002 by Barry Satchwell Smith in Los Angeles. The company’s goal is to tell stories plainly and simply. Their produced works include the World premieres of ‘MsTrial’ at the Court Theatre and ‘A Tad Bazaar’ at the Comedy Theatre. Their most recent movie ‘The Blue Hour’ was released last year and has been officially nominated at San Sebastian, Turino and Los Angeles.
For more information about newTACTics or to inquire about play submissions, email the Director of newTACTics, Barry Satchwell Smith at email@example.com
|The newTACTics Process|
|Step 1 : |
Plays up for serious consideration will be read by all TACT Company co-Artistic Directors (Cynthia Harris, Simon Jones and Scott Alan Evans) and also of newTACTics’ Director, Barry Satchwell Smith.
A meeting between these 4 will then decide which plays will move on for development.
A table reading for the selected plays will be presented at the TACT Studio for the TACT Artistic Directors and Company, the playwright and a few selected guests.
The objective of the table reading is to hear the play “off the page.” The TACT Artistic Directors along with the Director of newTACTics will determine next steps, of which there are 3 possible outcomes:
-No future consideration for newTACTics
-Further development of the play with the playwright for future newTACTics consideration.
-Step 4 (see below)
A fully rehearsed stage reading, will be presented for the play with 2 or more performances. The objective of this rehearsed reading is to give the play a true platform to be heard in its current form. The readings will be held at the TACT Studio, unless otherwise stated, and would be open to the Company, guests of the cast, TACT subscribers, Board members and industry guests of the playwright, and Director and Artistic Directors of TACT and often the public.
THE WRAP UP:
We are thoroughly excited at this new venture and hope you will come and experience this added direction with us.
Barry Satchwell Smith
|A Staged Reading of was presented at TACT on June 8 & 9, 2010|
CAST: TACT Company Member, LYNN WRIGHT
with Guest Artists: CHRISTOPHER BURNS, HUNTER CANNING & SUSAN LOUISE O'CONNOR
T or C is the 2009 Winner of Virtual Theatre Project's "The Pen is a Mighty Sword" play competition.
The New Mexico desert. Outside a town called Truth or Consequences.
There’s a trailer, rusted up, in bad shape. Gravel in front, then a birdbath, dried out, two rusted chairs, small table. In the background, a moonscape of dry hills. Out front, the desert. Somewhere in the distance, Space Port America is being built.
THE SET UP:
Trying to escape his past, Sheridan rents a broken down trailer in the New Mexico desert. His plans for solitude are thwarted by a very unexpected connection. It isn't long before everything he fears crashes down on him.
The Tor C Company: Susan Manikus (SM), Lynn Wright, Christopher Burns, Susan Louise O'Connor, Darrie Lawrence (Stage directions/narration); Barry Satchwell Smith (Director). Not pictured: Hunter Canning, Vincent Delany (playwright)
VINCENT DELANY'S plays have been produced and developed across the country at the Guthrie, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Seattle Rep, ACT, the Alabama Shakespeare Festival, Florida Stage, InterAct, the Children’s Theatre Company, the Magic, Woolly Mammoth, Pittsburgh Public, and Orlando Shakespeare Festival, among others. Awards include a McKnight Fellowship, a Jerome Commission, the Heideman Award, a Bush Fellowship, the Virtual Theatre Project New Play Award, and the Nathan Miller Award from the Sprenger Lang Foundation. He is a Core Alumnus of the Playwrights Center.
THE SEQUENCE, commissioned by the Guthrie, has been produced around the country and in the UK. THE WAR PARTY was developed through the National New Play Network, and had simultaneous world premieres at Seattle Public Theatre and Philadelphia’s InterAct Theatre. KUWAIT was first produced at the Humana Festival, and has since been produced in Minneapolis, Seattle, and the Sonoma County Rep, among others. It was recently filmed by Thursday Films and presented at festivals in Connecticut and New Hampshire.
Other plays include PERPETUA (New Harmony Project, PlayLabs, O’Neill Finalist), WRITER 1272 (Seattle University, Guthrie BFA commission), THREE SCREAMS (developed at Luna Stage), and THE ART OF BAD MEN (Pittsburgh Public, History Theatre).
Vincent’s plays are published by Smith and Kraus, Samuel French, Heineman, Dramatics Magazine, and Playscripts.com. He teaches playwriting in Seattle, where he lives with his wife and three children. He’s currently finishing a new three actor comedy called AMPERSAND.
TACT: The Late Christopher Bean (dir. Jenn Thompson) Recent Off-Broadway & Workshops‘: '68 (dir. John Gould-Rubin/LAByrinth); Foreman/Bridge Project (dir. Richard Foreman/Ontological). Film: The Exploding Girl w/ Zoe Kazan. BFA from the SUNY Purchase Acting Conservatoire. Hunter would like to express his deepest gratitude to Barry Satchwell Smith for giving him the opportunity to work on such a beautiful and powerful play. www.huntercanning.com