Friday, May 4, 2007

Announcing the 2007 Bay Area Playwrights Festival!

I know we promised it sooner - but better late than never.

We're got a really fantastic group of playwrights assembled for this year's Festival.

Here's the lineup:

2007 Bay Area Playwrights Festival
Magic Theater, San Francisco
August 3rd - 12th

Zakiyyah Alexander SWEET MALADIES
Christopher Chen INTO THE NUMBERS
Samuel D. Hunter I AM MONTANA
Julie Hebert TREE
(scroll down for bios)

Detailed Festival schedule will be posted soon.

Zakiyyah Alexander is a writer and performer whose plays include SICK? (Summer Play Festival), THE ETYMOLOGY OF BIRD (Hip Hop Theater Festival), BLURRING SHINE (Market Theater, Johannesburg), SWEET MALADIES (Rucker Theatre), AFTER THE SHOW: A PLAY IN MASK, PRALYA, ELECTED, ghost, and (900). She has received developmental support from The Rattlestick Theater, Hartford Stage, The Providence Black Repertory Company, 24/7 Theater Company, the Hip Hop Theater Festival, Vineyard Theater, the Women's Project, GAle GAtes et. al, La Mama Theatre, Greenwich Street Theater, etc. Awards include: the Theodore Ward Prize, Jackson Phelan Award, Drama League New Directors/New Works, New Professional Theatre Playwriting Award, Young Playwrights Inc., etc. Her work is included in the current New Monologues for Women by Women and in the upcoming book of essays, Girls who like Boys who like Boys. She is a resident member of New Dramatists and the Dramatists Guild. Past residencies and fellowships include: EST's Youngblood, the Women's Project Writer's Lab, the Women's Work Project, the Drama League, and New Dramatists. Current commissions include: The Philadelphia Theater Company, Second Stage Theater Time Warner grant, a Playground commission from the Children's Theater Company, and the University of Wisconsin. A graduate of the Yale School of Drama (MFA in playwriting) Zakiyyah is a native New Yorker and was raised in Brooklyn.

Annie Baker's plays have been developed and performed at the Soho Repertory, Atlantic Stage 2, the Ontological-Hysteric, Ensemble Studio Theater, the Kraine, and the Brick Theater in Williamsburg. She is the recipient of a Sloan Foundation Grant for Screenwriting and a Michener Playwriting Fellowship. She has a B.F.A. from the Department of Dramatic Writing at NYU's Tisch School of the Arts, and is a member of EST's Youngblood Playwrights Group and the 06/07 Soho Rep Writer/Director Lab.

Christopher Chen was born and raised in San Francisco. His first full-length play, Maya, was developed at the Asian American Theater Company’s New Works Incubator program, mentored by Philip Kan Gotanda. Additionally, many of his shorter works and one-acts have been produced at venues such as the Jon Sims Center, S.F. Fringe Festival, Theatre Rice, Brown Bag Theater, S.F. State One-Act Fringe, and Brooklyn College/Harrogate Theater Company. He was a member of Playground’s 2005-2006 Writer’s Pool. Chris is also a director and actor, and at U.C. Berkeley, from which he graduated in 2004, he led Theatre Rice’s playwriting workshop for one year. He is currently pursing an M.F.A. in playwriting at S.F. State.

Julie Hebert is a writer/director working in theater, film and television. Her first play, TRUE BEAUTIES, premiered at the Magic Theater in San Francisco in 1987, winning the Critics Circle Best Play Award and going on to other productions in Los Angeles, Seattle, Dallas, Canada and several universities. Her other plays including The Knee Desires The Dirt, Ruby’s Bucket of Blood, St. Joan of the Dancing Sickness and Abe Lincoln’s Dog have been developed and produced at theaters around the country and won numerous awards. Julie has directed new plays with Steppenwolf, Seven Stages, Provincetown Playhouse, LaMaMa, Eureka Theater, Magic Theater, Los Angeles Theater Center, San Diego Rep, and many others. In 2002, Julie received a Georrge Foster Peabody Award for co-directing “In Their Own Words” a documentary of interviews with survivors of the 9/11 attacks in New York. She has received grants from the NEA, TCG, California Arts Council, Marin Arts Council and others for writing, directing, and inter-disciplinary arts.
In television, Julie has written and directed for THIRD WATCH and ER, directed multiple episodes of THE WEST WING, and currently works as Co-Executive Producer for NUMB3RS, serving as both writer and director. Julie is a member of New Dramatists as well as several Guilds-- Dramatists; Writers; Directors. She was an early member of the Bay Area Playwrights Festival and taught in the MFA Theater Program at UCLA.

Samuel D. Hunter is originally from Moscow, Idaho, Samuel D. Hunter received his BFA in Dramatic Writing from NYU's Tisch School of the Arts in 2004 where he was the recipient of a John Golden Playwriting Prize. In May 2007, he received his MFA from the Iowa Playwrights Workshop where he was the recipient of an Iowa Arts Fellowship and the 2007 Richard Maibaum Award. His plays include: NORMAN ROCKWELL KILLED MY FATHER at the 2005 O'Neill Playwrights Conference, ABRAHAM (A SHOT IN THE HEAD) at Richard Foreman's Ontological-Hysteric Theater, ABRAHAM (I AM AN ISLAND) in Studio 42's Scattered Festival at Collective: Unconscious, PIGHEART at the 2006 Iowa Playwrights' Workshop New Play Festival and a 2007 PlayLabs semi-finalist, and RADIOPLAY and AMERICAN TRIPTYCH at the HomoGenius Festival at Manhattan Theater Source. He has taught playwriting courses at the University of Iowa and, over the last two summers, in the Occupied Palestinian Territories at Ayyam al-Musrah in Hebron and Ashtar Theater in Ramallah. At Ashtar, he co-wrote THE ERA OF WHALES, which was produced in the West Bank and at the International Istanbul Theater Festival.

Kevin Oakes’ plays include The Vomit Talk of Ghosts, The High Priest of Bad Math, and All Spoken By A Shining Creature: a hypertext punk tragedy. The Vomit Talk of Ghosts was developed as part of Soho Rep's Writer/Director Lab (Soho Repertory Theatre, NYC) and was produced by The Cutting Ball Theater in San Francisco for a successful six week run in the summer of 2003 and subsequently by the Flea Theater in New York City in June-July 2004. His play The High Priest of Bad Math was produced by Richard Foreman's Ontological-Hysteric Theatre and All Spoken By A Shining Creature: a hypertext punk tragedy, was produced by The Perishable Theatre of Providence, RI and by Todo Con Nada in New York City. Oakes’ productions also include text for The World part IV: a game in 26 parts produced by GAle GAtes et al. at the Whitney Museum of American Art as well as text for GAle GAtes’ So Long Ago I Can't Remember: a divine comedy, a thirteen scene performance installation based on Dante's Inferno. Oakes’ text for So Long Ago… was published in TheatreForum Magazine Summer/Fall 2002 issue. The Vomit Talk of Ghosts is published in Theater Magazine 35:2 and is included an anthology of new plays, New Downtown Now, published by the University of Minnesota Press and edited by playwright Mac Wellman. His play the evolutionist’s club, developed with support from Soho Rep, was recently in Risk is This…The Cutting Ball New Plays Festival.